Sainsbury’s, today one of the UK’s most popular supermarkets, has grown from just a single dairy shop in Drury Lane which opened in 1869. When Sainsbury’s started out it sold grocers’ own-brand products but the Sainsbury’s brand soon grew with most of its products having its own brand by 1939.
The lavishly decorated stores sprang up all around London, then during the War adapted to offer rationing. After the war, the Sainsbury’s brand continued to flourish with larger stores being introduced with self service shopping.
Sainsbury’s opened its first out of town supermarket in Croydon in 1974 and the first Sainsbury’s petrol station opened selling the Sainsbury’s brand with some of the large SavaCentres selling Jet petrol. It was around 1980 that Sainsburys started selling its own-brand fuel.
In 2004 Sainsbury’s struck a deal with BP and it is believed they now supply all of Sainsbury’s fuel.
Sainsbury’s are committed to offering cleaner fuel. In 1998 they started selling City Petrol, a cleaner, low-emission unleaded-petrol with a reward points incentive to customers who purchased it. In 2001 Sainsbury’s started a partnership with British Gas to provide LPG on supermarket forecourts. AutoGas is both a cleaner and cheaper alternative to petrol or diesel as a road fuel.