FreshXpress, the grocery chain that emerged from the Kwik Save administration last year, wants to open five stores this year.

The chain, which has 26 stores, will open a store at Melton Mowbray in Leicestershire, this week.

Chief executive Paul Niklas said he hoped to open “at least five stores” this year. He added that there was “two or three” stores in the pipeline and he had looked at 20 stores in the past few weeks.

Asked about trading, he said: “It is quiet after Christmas, but it is in line with our plans. We were starting to build up to the end of January and certainly on track for what we expected this year.”

Fresh fruit and vegetables account for about 10 per cent of its overall sales.

Niklas, who was previously Kwik Save managing director, also revealed that FreshXpress had expanded the number of suppliers it uses.

When FreshXpress was established last year it used just Costcutter as a supplier, but it now deals with FMCG giants Unilever and Procter & Gable, as well as milk supplier Wiseman.