I write in response to the letter 'Wal-Mart UK isn't working', which appeared in your publication last week (Letters, The Grocer, 16 September, p28).
It is perhaps worth pointing out that since Asda became part of Wal-Mart in 1999 our market share of grocery retailing has grown from 8.2% to 11.7% and is indeed continuing to grow [TNS four-week summary, 10 September 2006].
Not only that, but we have added a total of three million more customers (a million in the last year alone) and we have managed to knock at least £2bn off prices.
At Asda we have also succeeded in revolutionising our non-food business and bringing prices to the United Kingdom that were previously unheard of - not to mention transforming George into a global fashion brand.
Meanwhile, local sourcing at Asda
celebrates its fifth year of development. We opened our tenth local hub just last week in Sussex and we are trialling direct-to-store deliveries of produce in Cornwall.
Yet it doesn't stop there. This month we are relaunching our entire own label premium food range, Extra Special, as
well as introducing a further 500 new delicious meals.
Underpinning this activity is a commitment by both Asda and its suppliers to do the right thing for the environment.
By 2010 Asda will send nothing to landfill and we will only stock sustainable fish that has been certified by the Marine Stewardship Council.
It is important to stress that all of this work is only possible thanks to the fantastic relationships that we have built up with our suppliers, who are some of the best in the industry.
It is a shame that the anonymous food manufacturer writing to your magazine last week appears to disagree, but my door is always open should they wish to get in contact direct.