Sir; It has struck me that we are in a way a victim of our own success in newstrade, because the more papers you sell, the bigger the impact at stores on a Saturday and Sunday.
The volume of papers plus their inserts is now so great they won’t all fit on the shelves used on Monday to Friday.
Some papers now have up to four inserts on a Sunday, for which we only receive 2p per copy. On Saturday and Sunday, it can take an hour just to assemble and display the paper range, and in many stores we have put an extra person on the rota just to assemble papers.
In addition, many of the bundles are above the agreed 16kg and are extremely hard to lift, particularly for our female weekend staff.
If I visit a local multiple or motorway service station, both The Times and The Independent are available complete and wrapped in a bag, which is convenient to the customer and has saved the retailer assembling all the parts.
But if you ring your news wholesaler and ask for the same stock, they reply that there are only so many produced and the big multiples take them all.
Recently, it has not just been inserts. We have had papers with free CDs, free DVDs and even free books. Our staff have to remember which is free and which goes with which paper. Where is this going to end?