People are economising and are switching to cheaper store brands as they grow resistant to higher prices, Procter & Gamble has warned. (The Times £)
Iceland’s power-hungry freezers will dent the supermarket chain’s credit rating as electricity prices soar, an influential credit agency has warned. (The Telegraph)
One of Britain’s biggest shopkeepers has joined the call for Tory leadership candidates to prioritise a shake-up of ‘outdated’ business rates. Iceland boss Richard Walker urged the next prime minister to promise a ‘root and branch’ reform of the tax. (The Daily Mail)
Waitrose is removing best-before dates from nearly 500 fresh food products in an effort to reduce food waste (The Guardian). Supermarket Waitrose will remove “best before” dates on nearly 500 fresh food products - and instead encourage shoppers to use their own judgement (Sky News). Waitrose has become the latest UK supermarket to scrap best before dates on hundreds of products in an attempt to tackle food waste (The BBC).
The UK has given some of the least generous support to help drivers with high fuel costs among countries in Europe that have taken action, the RAC has said (The BBC). The UK has done less to ease the burden of high petrol prices than other countries, the RAC has claimed (Sky News).
Sales of oat milk and other plant-based dairy alternatives have jumped by 33 per cent in the past year at Milk & More as the doorstep delivery business’s customers pivot towards sustainable shopping (The Times £). The UK’s biggest doorstep milk delivery service, Milk & More, is aiming to use 500,000 fewer bottles a year by tweaking its systems so that each one can be reused 15% more, as glass prices soar (The Guardian).
The bakery chain Greggs has been refused an overnight licence for a large new store in central London amid claims it could become a “hotspot for late-night disturbances and antisocial behaviour”. (The Guardian)
The FT looks at ‘how the great British sandwich trade was derailed by Brexit, Covid and inflation’. After the pandemic dealt the industry the worst blow in its modern history, it is being reshaped by a combination of labour shortages, souring economic conditions and changes in British working habits. (The Financial Times £)
It is handy for investors that Reckitt and Unilever report in the same week. These two businesses in the same sector show how effectively management intervention can make a difference when companies are battered by the same economic storms. Reckitt currently looks a better bet, as it is well run and streamlined, with a hunger to develop new brands to meet customer demand… Unilever is still sprawling and uncertain. (The Daily Mail)
The US food safety watchdog has suspended emergency imports of baby formula from a Luton-based group to help with shortages after accusing the UK company of submitting altered paperwork to authorities in its home country. (The Financial Times £)
Walmart’s growth was built on aggressively competitive prices and the tempting promotions it calls “rollbacks”. But it is now having to resort to more markdowns than planned, particularly to shift inventory in apparel. (The Financial Times £)
Supermarket chain Carrefour has hit on a novel idea to cope if the worst-case scenario of electricity shortages comes true this winter in France: firing up the rotisseries it uses to cook chicken an hour earlier in the morning. (The Financial Times £)
English craft cider producers demand the same protection as champagne. Craft producers are now demanding protection from modern commercial ciders with added water and fruit flavourings which they say are undermining the reputation of the traditional products. (The Guardian)
Britain has a drinking problem – and the alcohol industry can’t afford to let us kick it, writes James Wilt in The Guardian. Rather than being subjected to intense tobacco-style restrictions, the alcohol industry has so far successfully fought to maintain “self-regulation” and offload responsibility for alcohol-related harms on to individual “problem” users, especially through the discourse of “responsible drinking”. (The Guardian)
Over the past 50 years, no country has reversed the trend of rising obesity. It seems increasingly likely that one reason for this is that public (and policy) understanding of its drivers is woefully outdated, meaning that most proposed remedies — such as food labelling — are misguided, and many accelerants — such as stress and abundant processed foods — are unchecked. (The Financial Times £)