Smith Welcomes Supermarket Ombudsman Plan

04 August 2009
The SNP has today welcomed the Competition Commission's call for a supermarket ombudsman to oversee relationships between retailers and suppliers.

SNP MEP and member of the European Parliament's Agriculture Committee Alyn Smith said:

"With supermarkets so dominant in the food market it is essential our producers are properly paid for the food they produce and the UK Government must follow the Commission's recommendation and introduce an ombudsman.

"Suppliers have long been concerned over the pressure that can be applied by supermarkets to change contracts.

"Too often producers describe the relationship with supermarkets as a David and Goliath situation with little alternative but to accept contract changes or lower prices.

"Supermarkets have shown willingness to work with the Scottish Government to promote Scottish produce but it is also important suppliers receive a fair deal.

"If the supermarkets are behaving properly and conforming to the code of conduct they should have nothing to fear from this step while food producers could have plenty to gain."