from Vicki Hird, senior food campaigner, Friends of the Earth

Sir; It is not success that concerns most of Tesco’s critics (‘Every Little Helped’, The Grocer, April 16, p35). It is how this success has been achieved and the impact it has on other people and the environment.
People are concerned because Tesco squeezes suppliers and smothers competition. Its unrestrained expansion is destroying our town centres by putting local shops out of business, leaving the public with less choice on where to shop.
Its hunger for profits is causing many British farmers to go out of business and the construction of huge stores and excessive growth in freight is leading to significant impacts on the environment, including climate change.
The government must address the failure of competition rules, weak planning guidelines and inadequate environment policy.
It must introduce stronger protection for suppliers and call a moratorium on any further takeovers. Without action there will be fewer local shops, fewer farmers in business and little hope for a more sustainable future for UK food and farming.

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