from Vicki Hird, food campaigner, Friends of the Earth

Sir; The competition authorities must take action now to protect consumers and farmers by stopping Tesco’s uncontrolled expansion. The retailer’s interim results this week showed that it now makes more profit in less than five minutes than the average farm makes in a year.
Tesco controls nearly one third of the UK grocery market, with £1 in every £3 spent on groceries spent at Tesco, and it is due to open more than 100 stores this year alone.
Their share of the c-store market is rapidly growing and its overall market share is bad for British business, consumers and the environment.
Tesco’s sensational growth is sucking the life out of local communities and competition authorities should be highly embarrassed that they have let things get this far. They must now act to curb the local and national monopoly of Tesco.
Tony Blair promised to tackle the ‘armlock’ farmers are in with supermarkets five years ago.
He has failed because the supermarkets code of practice is a damp squib, which must be strengthened urgently.
The new Tescopoly campaign web site [www.tescopoly.org] provides evidence from public interest groups that shows just how much of a problem Tesco is and how local communities UK are fighting back.

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