The China headquarters of French retail giant Carrefour has denied claims that it charges additional and unfair fees to local suppliers.

According to a report in the China Business Times last week, some seed and nut suppliers in Shanghai have stopped supplying local Carrefour stores because of a dispute over additional fees, reported AFX Asia.

The report claimed Carrefour has been charging additional fees to suppliers, meaning suppliers’ sale costs account for more than 50% of their total production costs, resulting in a loss to some suppliers.

It went on to say talks between the Shanghai Roasted Seeds and Nuts Association, on behalf of its supplier members, and Carrefour had broken down, resulting in the suppliers deciding to suspend deliveries to Carrefour

Carrefour said it does not charge an “initial” entry fee to suppliers and that it signed agreements with suppliers to charge additional service fees on an equal and voluntary basis.

The French retailer also said that not all 11 members of the association had stopped supplying local Carrefour outlets and that many of them have already signed 2003 supply contracts with the retailer.