Supermarket group Morrisons is to create an additional 2,000 jobs in 2009 – 40% more than the 5,000 originally expected.

The grocer has already met that target and aims to hire the extra recruits by the end of the year. A third are expected to be young people aged between 18 and 24.

Group HR director Norman Pickavance said: “These opportunities demonstrate the growth of Morrisons, with over 30 new stores opened since the beginning of the year and more still to come.”

He said there had been record turnouts at recruitment events – almost 5,000 people turned up at one for just 250 vacancies.

Morrisons offers “strong opportunities” for career progression, said Pickavance. A third of the grocer’s top executives began on the shopfloor.