The threat of crime to small retailers will be the theme of the Scottish Grocers' Federation conference in St Andrews this weekend.
President Jim Botterill said about 400 delegates would hear "quite shocking" results from the Federation's first annual survey of crime.
The study found that independent c-stores in Scotland lost nearly £3.5m in 2002 through crime, and staff in 42% of Scottish c-stores were threatened with violence. Botterill will press the conference's keynote political speaker, deputy first minister Jim Wallace, to introduce legislation to ensure non-harassment orders are raised to stop repeat offenders re-entering shops.
Harris International Marketing will present a summary of Scottish consumer trends, representatives of Britvic and Costcutter will talk about new product development, and Interbrew and the Scottish Co-op will talk about the importance of technology.

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