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Labour calls for food pricing inquiry – Arena Williams, Cushla Tangaere-Manuel

Labour has proposed an urgent inquiry to investigate the ever-increasing profits of supermarkets, aiming to lower costs for shoppers and food producers alike, says Labour Spokesperson for Commerce and Consumer Affairs Arena Williams and Primary Production Spokesperson Cushla Tangaere-Manuel.

Labour has proposed an urgent inquiry to investigate the ever-increasing profits of supermarkets, aiming to lower costs for shoppers and food producers alike, says Labour Spokesperson for Commerce and Consumer Affairs Arena Williams and Primary Production Spokesperson Cushla Tangaere-Manuel.

“Food prices in New Zealand are out of control. We are all directly affected and there are so many factors that go into pricing food, it can be hard to know what a fair and competitive price is,” Arena Williams said.

“That’s why Labour is proposing the Economic Development, Science and Innovation Committee opens an inquiry into food pricing throughout March 2024 to consider the factors that go into pricing unprepared food sold directly to consumers and find a way to drive prices down.

“We know that there are global pressures on food supply, and changing weather and world events can impact the production of domestic growers, but supermarkets cannot point to these factors alone when explaining rising prices.

“We will invite submissions from both supermarkets and suppliers on a range of factors, including their commercial arrangements, competition and strategies for improvement,” Arena Williams said.

“Rules to protect suppliers when interacting with the major supermarkets could also have a part to play. We want to ensure the grocery sector is a competitive and easier to navigate for food producers such as farmers and growers,” Cushla Tangaere-Manuel said.

“We would ask the Commerce Commission’s Grocery Action Group to assist as advisors to ensure any solutions or options identified by the inquiry can be implemented quickly to make life easier for New Zealand consumers.

“We hope to see lasting change in the grocery sector. The Economic Development, Science and Innovation Committee could present findings to the House as early as the end of August,” Cushla Tangaere-Manuel said.

 

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