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Record Profit Announcement Reinforces Need for Supermarket Regulator - says Farron

April 21, 2009 11:20 AM

Following the news that Supermarket chain Tesco has reported underlying annual pre-tax profits of £3.13bn-the highest on record for a UK retailer- Liberal Democrat Defra Spokesperson Tim Farron MP has called for the creation of an Independent Supermarket Regulator to ensure these profits are passed on to farmers.

"While it's good to see businesses doing well in the recession, we shouldn't lose sight of the fact that these huge profits have been built by exploiting small family farmers by paying them a pittance for their produce.

"At present Tesco control over 30% of the UK food market. There can be little doubt that a powerful supermarket monopoly has damaged farmers and has weakened rural communities.

"It would take just under £6million-less than of 0.2% Tesco's annual pre-tax profit- to set up an Independent Regulator to break up this supermarket 'trolleygarchy'.

"Instead of continuing Labour's policy of letting supermarkets cut prices by cutting farmers profits, the Lib Dems would ensure farmers and consumers both get a fair price for food by creating a legally binding supermarket code, enforced by a powerful proactive Food Market Regulator."