As pressure mounts for a Competition Commission review of the supermarket sector, a pressure group has stepped up its campaign to help local communities resist the opening of supermarkets in their areas.
On the same day as the All-Party Parliamentary Group for Small Shops released a report warning that the demise of small retailers may be at hand, the Tescopoly alliance announced the extension of its website to act as a forum for community campaigns to discuss tactics to fight the spread of supermarkets.
“The new section added to the Tescopoly website is the first time that local campaigns against the opening of supermarkets can share their experiences and pool their knowledge,” Ruth Potts of the New Economics Foundation (NEF) told just-food.
The alliance was formed in response to Tesco’s domination of the grocery sector and aims to redress the disparity of power between local campaigns who oppose the spread of supermarkets and the supermarkets themselves.
Members of the alliance include Friends of the Earth, the GMB union, the Small and Family Farms Alliance, Banana Link, the new economics foundation, Women Working Worldwide, the National Group on Homeworking and War on Want.
Commenting on the Parliamentary Group for Small Shops report, Potts said: “What the report shows, and what we’ve been hearing from local communities, is that there is a groundswell of opinion that wants to find a space for small-scale retailers in the market place.
“For this to happen we need two things. At a local level campaigns need to become more organised and cohesive; we hope that the website will provide a forum for this. At a national level we need regulators who will regulate.”