Sir; Having participated in online auctions, and seen the results in store, we would make the following additional comments to those already made. On consumable lines we have observed the replacement auctioned lines to be of lower performance and specification than the auction requirement. As an overseas manufacturer we are approached at our factory by traders for prices of lines to be auctioned. Almost invariably the requests from these suppliers specify the product below that requested by the retailer. On consumer packs we have seen substantially reduced costs to the retailer, to what we would consider unsustainable levels, with little evidence of these reductions being passed on to consumers. In one case the retail price increased! Online auctions are symptomatic of the electronic age where, with the lack of response to voice mail and e-mail, communications are reduced to a level where real issues are not even heard, and there is no real discussion or negotiation. Do the retailers accept that in the long term they will get the product and quality of service they pay for, with more suppliers pulling out of market sectors, leaving little choice for the buyer? Non-food manufacturer Name and address supplied {{LETTERS }}