from Colin Richell, National Federation of Progressive Co-operators

SIR; With regard to the possibility of a unified national co-operative society, Leslie Freitag (Readers' letters, The Grocer, April 29, p29), may recall that my letters expressed the concern that members of the smaller societies might not agree to become part of a very large national society.

You have to bear in mind that the Co-operative Group has disposed of its manufacturing subsidiaries and most of its superstores, is disposing of its department stores and has sold Priory Motors.

Smaller societies that still engage in these activities would fear that they would lose them in a national society.

The Co-operative Group is fighting back because it has a strong loyal membership who will fight multiples such as Tesco to the death.