Supermarkets on notice over grocery code of conduct

 In Australia, Coles, NewZealand, Woolworths
Coles and Woolworths may have to answer to a grocery industry ombudsman in three years if they fail to embrace the principles of a voluntary code of conduct expected to be approved by Parliament next month.
The major grocery chains have come under renewed pressure to sign the grocery industry code of conduct after a Senate committee recommended last week that the regulation stand without further amendment, despite widespread calls from suppliers for a mandatory rather than a voluntary code and for the appointment of an ombudsman.
In a dissenting report, four Nationals senators – Matthew Canavan, Bridget McKenzie, John Williams and Barry O’Sullivan – called for the government to appoint an ombudsman to ensure compliance with the code and to settle disputes between retailers and suppliers, citing the cost of mediation and arbitration, and the hurdles for small suppliers attempting to make complaints against major retailers.  Sydney Morning Herald – Read more…

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