Tag Archives: Supermarket

Price rises have slowed – but not in line with Tory targets. Because of GREED?

Shortfall: business bosses are pushing up prices in line with nothing more than their own greed, and we’re being told to meet these extra charges despite real-terms wages cuts.

Inflation has slowed from 10.1 per cent in March to 8.7 per cent in April – a tiny decrease of 1.4 per cent, suggesting that Rishi Sunak’s aim to halve inflation will not be reached for a long time.

The figure is now being driven by food price rises. These increases could be due to Brexit, and the extra costs now associated with bringing goods into the UK from Europe, and they could be due to the fact that EU workers are no longer coming to the UK to pick our own crops, meaning much of them have been left to rot instead.

(Or at least, that’s what we’ve been told.)

The other possible reason is that this is greedflation – that prices have been raised opportunistically by supermarket bosses who have enjoyed massive increases in profit as a result.

Grocery price rises stand at 19.1 per cent. They’ve slowed but that’s no consolation when it’s a climbdown from record highs.

It is clear that much of the reason for the current high inflation rate is Tory government – decisions by the Tories have artificially increased prices and, coupled with their efforts to cut workers’ pay, may be considered deliberate attempts to impoverish millions of people.

Successful attempts as well: more than 14 million of us – nearly a quarter of the population – are now struggling.

What’s to be done?

There certainly seems to be an argument for the introduction of a grocery price regulator, albeit with more teeth than those in the energy and water industries (as we’ve seen lately).

If supermarket owners are determined to push prices through the roof, isn’t it time a cap was imposed?


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Sunak meeting food producers won’t stop the main cause of rising prices: GREED

Rishi Sunak: he’s full of avarice and so are the supermarket bosses.

Rishi Sunak met around 70 food industry leaders at Downing Street today (May 16) to discuss ways to bring down the cost of food. It won’t do any good.

Food inflation rate in the UK, March 2015-December 2022.

The BBC News article about the meeting featured a lot of bleeding-heart talk by the people who create the actual food, saying their operational and shipping costs have increased hugely.

It doesn’t mention the fact that supermarket chains like Tesco hugely increased their profits last year.

Tesco profits between 2015-22.

Sainsbury profits 2014-15 to 2021-22.

There is no monitoring of cost prices and selling prices of food sold in supermarkets – and profit margins keep rising. This, in turn keeps inflation high.

Meanwhile, politically-motivated pundits like Ann Widdecombe on the BBC’s Politics Live tell us that it is demands for wages to rise in line with costs that triggers high inflation. This is not true – it’s just a lie to keep you poor.

Sunak won’t do the necessary, of course. Regulation is anathema to a Conservative.

High inflation, coupled with low wages, means he can get away with a bigger lie – claiming that public services (including the NHS) are not affordable.

In a balanced economy, in which the proceeds of the economy were shared fairly between business owners, executives and employees, so that everybody was able to pay a fair share towards the public good, we could have our public services and cheap, nutritious food.

We don’t get it for a simple reason: Rishi Sunak and his government don’t want us to have it.


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Greedflation: companies are fuelling inflation by overcharging us to build profit

French protesters have stormed the Paris stock exchange: will greedflation prompt the British to do worse?

Whenever the Conservatives tell us wage increases are driving inflation, be aware that they are lying.

Inflation isn’t being driven by wage demands but by greedy companies that are using the cost-of-living crisis to drive up prices and boost their profits.

Take a look at the degree by which food prices have risen:

Claudia Webbe puts the situation – and the reason for it – in a nutshell:

Now read this:

That is what the International Monetary Fund and the European Central Bank seem to have discovered, according to The Guardian:

The IMF and the ECB wouldn’t put it in these terms, of course, but both support the idea that companies are gouging their customers when they can. The non-technical term for what is going on is greedflation.

Companies [are] doing rather better out of the cost of living crisis than workers… The flipside of steeply rising prices but only modestly higher wages [is] that profit margins [have] “surged”.

Unite, one of the UK’s biggest unions, published a report in March that blamed systematic profiteering across the economy for fuelling the cost of living crisis. Energy companies, supermarkets, shipping companies, car dealers and food manufacturers had all cashed in on drought, war, and strong demand after the pandemic to “push prices and profits through the roof”.

The eurozone’s central bank looked at the contribution of profits to inflation over nearly a quarter of century, and found that between 1999 and 2022, profits were responsible for one-third of the inflation rate on average. In 2022 alone, profits contributed to two-thirds of the rise.

But whereas the ECB – from its president, Christine Lagarde, downwards – is fully exercised by the threat posed by greedflation, policymakers in the UK seem far more relaxed. There have been plenty of calls for wage restraint, most notably from Andrew Bailey, the governor of the Bank of England, but far fewer for price restraint… Price controls, of the sort used in the 1970s, are seen as to be avoided at all costs.

Instead, inflation is being controlled by increasing interest rates – which sucks demand from the economy and reduces pressure for wage rises by incurring job losses (meaning that, once again, too many jobseekers end up competing for too few jobs and the bosses can pay whatever they want).

But workers who have taken pay cut after pay cut for more than a decade are close to breaking point and something has to give way soon.

Will we see scenes like what has happened in France over pensions, with protesters storming bastions of capitalism like the stock exchange and trashing it? Will we see worse?

It’s a good question. The British have very long tempers and have put up with a lot – so much, in fact, that nobody knows what they might do if those tempers snap.

It seems likely that, if they do not moderate their own rhetoric and curb corporate greedflation soon, the Tories might find out.


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Is this the best comment on Rishi Sunak’s new Northern Ireland deal?

Further to my report on Rishi Sunak’s “Windsor Framework”, I reproduce this without comment:

Are the Northern Irish feeling lucky, right about now?


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Let them eat turnips, says Coffey – and the supermarkets promptly run out of them

Is there no end to the idiocy of our Tory government?

Apparently our supermarkets have run short of tomatoes, peppers and cucumbers. The excuse is that imports from Spain and Morocco have been hit by frosty weather.

Challenged on the issue in Parliament, Environment Secretary Therese Coffey suggested that people could turn to British “specialisms” in the meantime – like turnips.

And now the supermarkets have run out of turnips.

Nice one, Therese!

(What a chucklehead.)

Apparently the shortage will last another two-to-four weeks. What will she be asking us to eat by the end of that time – the earth these vegetables were grown in?

Needless to say, there has been a bit of a response to this nincompoopery from the public.

I like this one very much because, of course, former Labour leader Jeremy Corbyn is undoubtedly inundated with turnips, tomatoes and who knows what else, what with having and tending an allotment:

Then there are the Brexit references:

This video clip expands on the theme (but beware of STRONG LANGUAGE):

His last point is what the Tories will probably spring on us as the answer:

Dig for Brexit! Jeremy Corbyn is right!

News-hacks take note: Army ‘on standby’ to deliver food after BREXIT drained UK of lorry drivers

At least Metro couched its reporting of the government-sponsored lie by saying the crisis caused by the lack of lorry drivers “is thought to have been exacerbated by the so-called ‘pingdemic'”.

We know the shortage of lorry drivers has little to do with the government’s Covid-19 warning app on mobile phones, though, don’t we?

It happened because of Brexit; the drivers have all been sent back to the EU nations where they were born.

And now the army has been put on standby to deliver supplies to supermarkets.

That’s 2,000 qualified HGV drivers to make up an expected shortfall of 100,000. Does that seem realistic to you?

We all know the truth, and we’re all saying more or less the same thing:

There is one conclusion to be drawn from this story.

It is that Metro is written by stenographers for government propagandists, rather than by proper reporters.

That’s not my opinion; it’s that of Ian Leslie in The Critic, who wrote the words quoted here:

“Journalists check our stories about what’s going on against the facts and give us different, more truthful angles.”

That certainly doesn’t seem to have happened here! A caveat that the problem “is thought to have been” due to the ‘pingdemic’ doesn’t cut any ice.

Aren’t we lucky to have journalism like that of Vox Political, here on the social media! And what a shame most people are too busy reading Metro to even give it a glance.

Here’s a thought:

Why not share this article with your friends, to show them what they’re missing?

Source: Army ‘on standby’ to deliver food amid shortage of lorry drivers | Metro News

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This is how supermarkets should explain the Brexit-created supply shortage to customers

If only supermarkets explained the facts to their customers, like this:

Personally, I could live without the swearing but it makes the point well.

The strongest point is the comment about the cause of the empty shelves.

We know there’s a driver shortage which the Tory government is trying to blame on Covid-19-related illnesses – although I notice there’s no attempt to tell us why all the drivers are supposed to have suddenly become ill at the same time.

In fact, the missing drivers have all been sent packing back to their EU countries of origin because the Tory government demanded it after the UK left the EU.

So the caption that reads,

Brexit caused this – All other COVID affected countries have plenty of stock

is particularly effective and accurate.

Why don’t supermarkets do this for real (I get the impression that this is just a satirical mock-up)?

They’re probably afraid customers will take offence at having to face the facts of their own stupidity – and shop somewhere else.

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Brexiteer bread-maker tries to blame driver shortage on Covid-19

Brexiteer Tory-funding bread manufacturer Warburtons has tried to blame its failure to keep up with local deliveries on Covid-19 when the shortage of drivers is actually attributable to Brexit.

In an article in The Grocer on July 19, the firm responded to a tweet complaining about non-delivery due to driver shortages:

We, like many businesses, are experiencing higher levels of absence due to the rise in community infection rates of Covid-19 and the knock on effect that has with more people having to self-isolate.”

But industry leaders soon went on the record to say that the shortage of lorry drivers is due to Brexit – and that supermarket shelves are likely to stay empty for at least five months:

They say the shortage of drivers can only be fixed if EU drivers are allowed back in the country.

Logistics UK, which represents freight owners including supermarkets.

It estimates a shortage of 90,000 HGV drivers including an estimate 25,000 EU truckers who have gone home following Brexit. On top of that there is a backlog of 25,000 applications for trucker driving licences.

Being a Brexiteer company, Warburtons is unlikely to admit that Brexit has affected it. Chairman Jonathan Warburton has previously made his feelings known:

“Brexit is a very good thing to have happened. We are well out of the rotting corpse of Europe. We could either continue to be in the European Union and wait for it to all to collapse around us, or we could make our own way out of it and crack on as an independent nation.”

Now we see how that is working for him – and he is trying to deny it.

Several thoughts occurred to me while watching this train crash.

Firstly, they could solve their problem by hiring new drivers. Unfortunately, this is not possible because they would all need HGV licences and “there is a backlog of 25,000 applications for trucker driving licences.” So the Tory government is letting industry down. Should have thought of this before finalising Brexit – they only had four years of thinking time!

Secondly, there’s no reason to have any sympathy for this firm. It supported Brexit and is a regular donor to the Conservative Party whose government under Boris Johnson pushed Brexit down our collective throats. See This Site’s article on Tory donors for further information.

Finally, This Writer is old enough to remember news reports showing empty shelves in the former Soviet supermarket GUM, with Tories of the day spouting dread predictions that this would happen in the UK if the socialists were allowed back into government.

How ironic that it is under a Tory government, and due to Tory policies, that our supermarket shelves have emptied.

Source: Warburtons struggling to keep up with local deliveries as driver shortage bites | News | The Grocer

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Let’s do the Brexit ‘hokey-cokey’: supermarkets told to stockpile food after Sharma said no

Remember this? It won’t be toilet roll that’s missing from supermarket shelves in January if they follow Alok Sharma’s advice – it will be food.

I had not realised how badly business minister Alok Sharma embarrassed himself on Monday’s breakfast media round.

Only a few hours ago, as I type this, he told the nation – well, see for yourself:

It turns out he was directly contradicting the government of which he is the business minister! See:

The UK government is reported to have warned supermarkets to stockpile food and other essential supplies amid increasing fears of a no-deal Brexit in less than three weeks’ time.

And in anticipation of shortages prompted by a no-deal, ministers have told supermarkets to start stockpiling goods.

Food producers have warned supplies of fresh vegetables will be worst hit if tariffs were imposed on goods in the event of a no-deal. They say shortages could last for at least three months.

If that is accurate, then Sharma’s advice is borderline criminal.

He was telling supermarkets not to stock up on vital food, despite having been warned of a shortage in the very near future.

He was telling the nation’s grocers to starve the people of the UK.

Source: Supermarkets ‘told to stockpile food’ as fears grow of no-deal Brexit | Brexit | The Guardian

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Universal Credit forces ‘sandwich at Christmas’ claimant to beg supermarkets for food

Faceless: Universal Credit is an attempt to avoid treating benefit claimants as people. It is easier to deprive you of everything if they don’t have to think of you as a person.

It took This Writer a while to understand this.

Not only did the Department for Work and Pensions – through its function (you can’t call it a benefit) Universal Credit – penalise a woman who has had several strokes, including a rare spinal cord stroke resulting in lack of mobility which means she needs to use a wheelchair…

Not only did it take so much away from Carol Brice of Bridgwater that her Christmas dinner was a sandwich

Not only was it pilloried by public opinion after this treatment became commonly-known…

But it hasn’t responded to that bad publicity at all, and Ms Brice has been forced to write to supermarkets, begging for food.

And…

Worst of all…

Those supermarkets have, in effect, told her to get lost.

They told her they only work with charities and she should go to a food bank.

Tory Britain, 2020.

They bury you in bureaucracy and when you try to dig yourself out, they ignore you altogether.

Source: Universal Credit claimant who had just a sandwich to eat on Christmas day begs supermarkets for food – Somerset Live

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