Morrisons like-for-likes and profits rose over its last year, making the period its third consecutive year of growth.

Pre-tax profits rose 16.9% to £380m while like-for-like sales climbed 2.8%.

Total sales hit £17.3bn, up 5.8% in the year to February 4, 2018.

The grocer, which has been in turnaround mode in recent years, made progress on a raft of strategic initiatives over the year.

These included supplying McColl’s convenience stores with stock from both branded product and revived Safeway brand stock, tying up with Sandpiper in the Channel Islands and expanding Morrisons at Amazon.

The Sandpiper deal will see it supply all of Sandpiper’s 43 grocery stores in Jersey and Guernsey, with the majority of the chain’s estate rebranded to Morrisons Daily.

The grocer said that it was on track to achieve £700m wholesale supply sales by the end of 2018. It aims to leverage its vertically integrated model to build a £1bn wholesale business in the near future.

Chairman Andy Higginson said: “Morrisons is now entering its third consecutive year of growth, which is a credit to the whole team.

“We will continue to prioritise consistent, meaningful and sustainable growth, which I am confident we are well placed to keep delivering.”

Morrisons is leading the charge in the grocery sector at the moment, outperforming its big four rivals.

However, it is not immune to the structural changes taking place in the industry currently: earlier this year it announced plans to cull around 1,500 in-store management roles, joining Sainsbury’s and Tesco in redundancy rounds.

It is axing a host of middle-management jobs across its 491 stores and will instead create 1,700 more junior, customer-facing positions.