July 08, 2022
Price muddling target for groceries commissioner
Consumer New Zealand would like to see the new groceries commissioner get their hands dirty in taking on supermarket pricing.
Chief executive John Duffy says he’s still waiting to see what rules are laid out for the new commissioner in the promised grocery competition act.
But action is needed to deter the sort of conduct seen over the past 20 years since the emergence of a supermarket duopoly.
“What I’d really like to see is that this commissioner gets his or her hands dirty and pulls the industry up on particularly some of the pricing practices we see on the supermarket shelves, so that is but also how pricing is displayed on the shelves because the supermarkets use a staggering array of confusing techniques to make us think we are getting a special when we are not,” Mr Duffy says.
He says while the groceries commissioner can address competition at an operational level, more Government action is needed to allow competition at a structural level that could allow for new entrants such as Māori.