Blog: What retailers comply with the UK grocery code?
Katy Askew | 23 June 2015
The UK's Grocery Code Adjudicator insisted it is "making a difference" and improving the relationship between retailers and suppliers at its annual conference this week.
Commenting on the findings of a YouGov survey, released to coincide with the conference yesterday (22 June), Adjudicator Christine Tacon said the code was improving the supplier-retailer relationship in a year that has challenged both parties. “We still have some way to go in important areas but this is a clear sign we are on the right track,” she insisted.
Certainly, it would appear complaints are marginally down even though more suppliers would be willing to flag issues. Retail buyers found to "rarely" or "never" comply with the code were also slightly lower across the board. Overall, retailer compliance with the code is up, the watchdog insisted. Progress – albeit by low single-digit percentage points – has apparently been made.
But here is what I found most interesting reading in the report: if I were to ask you what retailers are most compliant with the code, your response would likely feature Waitrose, Marks and Spencer or Sainsbury's - the retailers that make a real song and dance about provenance and quality. While all of these are in the list of the top four "most compliant" retailers, it might come as something of a surprise to note German discounter Aldi tops the rankings. Lidl came in fifth, ahead of Asda, The Co-operative Group, Tesco and Morrisons.
Not only does Aldi rank as the most compliant retailer, over the past 12 months it has also made most progress in stamping out behaviours prohibited by the code.
In its "overall assessment of compliance with the code", YouGov found occasions when Aldi is "never" compliant stood at 0%. Incidents when it "rarely" adheres to the rules fell from 12% to 5% between 2014 and 2015. Aldi adheres to the code "consistently well" and "mostly" in 94% of its interactions with suppliers.
This places Aldi's supplier relationship on a more equitable footing than those of retailers at the high end of the market, where consumers pay a premium for products that are supposedly of a greater quality and where issues like ethical sourcing are brought to the fore. Both Aldi and Lidl rank higher than the mainstream multiples like Asda, Tesco and Morrisons.
The results of the YouGov survey serve to dispel any myth the discounters can charge lower prices because they squeeze their suppliers. On closer examination, it would appear the discounters are among the 'fairest' retailers with which to secure listings. Their low prices come back to ranging, inventory turnover, low overheads and strict cost management.
Overall assessment of compliance with the Code: Source YouGov Survey
Farmers in three Australian states are set to grow "millions of extra vegetables" to meet increased demand under a new supply agreement between the country's second largest grocer, Coles and US-based ...
The BBC turned to just-food today for insight on the price dispute between Tesco and Unilever....
Just weeks after buying UK turkey processor Bernard Matthews from administration, food tycoon Ranjit Boparan has struck a similar deal....
Shares in Tyson Foods slumped on Friday, closing down almost 9% after an analyst claimed a lawsuit facing the company could hit the US meat titan....
- Price an underlying tension across European FMCG
- Analysis: Tyson's shrewd investment in Beyond Meat
- Danone's Q3 sales - what the analysts say
- It won't just be Unilever to push for Brexit hikes
- Interview: UK trade body on Brexit's policy impact
- Bel takes majority stake in MOM Group
- Mars launches Maltesers in the US
- Nestle lowers outlook on "softer environment"
- China milk powder arrests prompt Fonterra "review"
- Metropoulos invests in Utz Quality Foods
- The Big 15: Strategies and Priorities of Top Packaged Food Players in Comparison
- Omega-3 in Food and Beverage:Time for a Reboot?
- Packaged Food: Quarterly Statement Q3 2016
- Global Food Packaging: Innovating for Greater Convenience and Quality Image
- Constellation Brands, Inc. (STZ) - Financial and Strategic SWOT Analysis Review