The vegetable promotion on cabbage and broccoli by SuperValu, the Musgrave group’s franchise chain in the Republic of Ireland, has angered growers.
According to the fresh produce co-ordinator with the Irish Farmers’ Association, PJ Jones, the discounting will force growers to take a cut in returns, at a time when their numbers are declining “at an alarming rate” and their production costs are increasing.
There was also a danger, Jones said, that the discounting could set off a retail price war “in which growers will be the ultimate victims”.
Jones said the promotion, for a limited period, had been introduced without any consultation with producers.
Its timing was baffling, he said, as supplies were “extremely tight” and such promotions traditionally took place when there was surplus produce.
SuperValu claimed the effect of the promotion would be to boost consumption, which would benefit growers.