Everyone knows that the two Supermarket Giants are slashing prices on basic items to win your shopping dollars and pay a larger dividend to their shareholders.
You may have even noticed that a few of your favorite brands are missing from the supermarket shelves and have been replaced by home branded alternatives.
I am certain if you are a TV news viewer you will have caught the story that the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) has come out publicly and urged whistleblowers to come forward with evidence of wrongdoing by the supermarket giants Coles and Woolworth’s.
The chairman of the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission, Rod Sims, warned the supermarkets that he had made it a priority to uncover possible abuses of market power after receiving fresh allegations in the past six months.
”If people have concerns, come to us with the evidence. It is all very well for some of the industry representatives and others to talk about behavior that is going on there, but we need evidence,” he said yesterday.
Suppliers and farmers have complained that the savage price war between the supermarkets, together with a surge in home-brand products, is squeezing profit margins to breaking point.
Mr. Sims said the ACCC could protect whistleblowers if people within the supply chain who had information were concerned about repercussions from large supermarkets.
”They can come and talk to us confidentially and if we can get a number of people talking to us confidentially and we can build up a picture then we can take action in a general sense rather than doing it in a way that exposes that individual.”
You really would have to be Blind Freddie to not have seen what is happening at your local major supermarket. It does not matter if your preference is for Coles or Woolworth’s, or even if you shop at both seeking the best price, you must have noticed the shenanigans going on?
One drops the price of its milk and the other drops bread prices. One advertised its meat as being hormone free and then we find serious price cuts in fruits and vegetables. You no longer seem to be able to buy an item at a special price – you have to buy two or three of four to get a bargain!
That Rice Cake you always bought because it was only made from rice, no hidden additives etc is now more expensive than the store home brand product, which has got hidden additives in it! And the list of complaints and schemes grows longer by the day.
Monopoly Reigns. They own the supermarkets, the petrol stations, the liquor shops. What in the name of Sam Hill will they take over next?
Quite some time ago I came across an article showing that both these giants were buying up land in towns and new subdivisions, even if they already had a store in the vicinity – to prevent competition from encroaching on ‘their territory’. you will hear about it at the link below. I also found this from ALDI.
If you are still uncertain about what these two supermarket giants are up to please take a few minutes to watch The Hungry Beast which looks at Australia’s Big Two supermarket chains. Woolworth’s & Coles are a $100 billion a year duopoly with a retail market share unmatched in the developed world. And they have their fingers in a lot of other pies too.
Just how did the government manage to allow these two companies to get control of over 70+% of the market? I know money talks, and someone (or many) must be turning a blind eye to this monopoly.
When these two giants are cutting prices, who do you think they are hurting? It is the supplier, the grower, the farmer who eventually suffers the most.
SP Exports, the debt-laden tomato grower which supplies to Woolworth’s and Coles, has collapsed under the weight of low farm-gate prices and a series of disasters, including the state’s floods and two chemical oversprays from nearby properties.
I think it is seriously past the time we spoke to our politicians and found out why this has happened and what they intend to do about it. Do we really want to have all our foods coming in from overseas, where cleanliness and standards are not as high as we have come to expect? Do we want all our meat, fruit and vegetable growers to be put out of work – simply because of the greed of two supermarket giants?
Personally I buy most of my fruit and vegetables (those which I do not grow myself) from local farmers markets, and I have noticed some meat sales appearing at these markets as well. If this continues I will stop using Woolworth’s and Coles completely and travel to an independent grocery store when necessary. We are deprived here in Tasmania of competition. ALDI has not arrived, and one must wonder who, if anyone is keeping them out?
Food prices are soaring folks – and it will not get any better once Julia and Bob’s Carbon Tax hits us. We can only pray that the Liberal/Nationals will oust the present red/green regime ASAP and they will keep their promise (not something politicians are known to do) and rescind the Carbon Dioxide Taxation Scheme.