Tesco has come in for a fresh round of criticism over its tactics for developing new stores.
Campaigners accuse the supermarket of allowing a Scottish town centre site it controlled through an agent to run down, in a bid to boost support for its redevelopment plans.
The row concerns the Linwood precinct 12 miles outside Glasgow, which Tesco took control of through the Balmore agency in 2007 and which remains undeveloped.
Scottish enterprise minister Jim Mather has instructed planning officials to investigate the case, according to The Times.
A spokesman for Tesco said: “Our plans will regenerate Linwood, bringing many jobs for the long-term unemployed and a new health centre and library. Linwood town centre has been in decline for years, before our involvement or the involvement of Balmore. Our plans will reverse this.”
Last week The Grocer revealed that Tesco was growing its estate far quicker than its UK supermarket rivals.
Tesco leaves rivals behind in the race for new floorspace (28 August 2010)
Sainsbury’s savours win over Tesco in Wolverhampton planning row (13 May 2010)