Asda and Morrisons are rationing fresh produce including tomatoes, cucumbers and peppers amid shortages caused by poor weather in Europe and north Africa as experts warn that the problems could last for weeks (The Guardian). Asda and Morrisons are imposing limits on some of the fruit and vegetables customers can buy due to supply shortages (Sky News). The shortages - which are affecting Ireland too - are largely the result of extreme weather in Spain and north Africa, where floods, snow and hail have affected harvests (BBC).

Shortages of tomatoes and peppers on UK supermarket shelves are set to last “for weeks”, retailers have warned, as the National Farmers’ Union said domestic production was falling in agricultural sectors from salads to eggs. (Financial Times £)

Walmart said it expected sales growth to moderate in the second half of this year, prompting the world’s largest retailer to issue a cautious outlook for 2024 as it observes the impact of the Federal Reserve’s aggressive campaign to raise interest rates. (Financial Times £)

Labour pains engulf pandemic stars as retail giants continue to raise wages for frontline staff amid cautious outlook. Walmart recently announced that its minimum wage for employees will be $14 per hour while its average worker will make $17.50 per hour. The big general retailer and grocer provided a lacklustre outlook on Tuesday. (Financial Times £)

The speciality baker behind Mary Berry’s cake range Finsbury Food has posted double-digit sales growth, but it warned of challenges as profits were hampered by cost inflation. (Daily Mail)

The remaining 106 Paperchase stores will close, resulting in the loss of 900 jobs, after administrators failed to find a buyer for the retailer’s remaining assets (The Times £). Around 900 workers will lose their jobs at Paperchase as all its stores are closed (Daily Mail).

Inflation may soon peak in the grocery aisle – groceries aren’t getting cheaper anytime soon, but companies are pointing to fewer price rises this year. While there are signs of easing on both sides of the Atlantic, it remains stubbornly high, indicating that the path to stable prices may not be straightforward. (Bloomberg £)

The boss of one of the UK’s largest fish and chips chains has said that industry prices are stabilising but yet to reach their peak. (Sky News)

Tom Athron, chief executive of Fortnum & Mason, has urged Rishi Sunak’s government to seal a deal with Brussels on post-Brexit trade rules for Northern Ireland, saying that without the agreement it is “almost impossible” for food retailers to export to the EU. (Financial Times £)

Marks and Spencer is ‘going into battle’ on sportswear after a lockdown-fuelled boom in sales. (Daily Mail)

Pret a Manger has announced it will stop making smoothies and frappes, with an expanded iced drinks range being introduced from April. (The Guardian)

French tycoon rolls the dice once more at Casino – Jean-Charles Naouri in talks over merger of retailer’s food operation. This month Casino announced it was in early talks over a deal to combine its French food retail business with Teract, which owns a garden centre chain called Jardiland and a farmers’ co-operative called InVivo. (Financial Times £)