The S Group has reiterated that the cuts in the prices of home-grown vegetables will be made by lowering its own profit margin, not by imposing lower prices on agricultural producers.
“The S Group will allocate 45 million euros for [lowering] the prices of home-grown food. We've held no talks whatsoever with producers about prices. We've clearly instructed all stakeholders that no talks about producer prices will be held in relation to the price reductions,” Ilkka Alarotu, the head of assortments and pricing at the retail co-operative, tells Uusi Suomi.
Alarotu commented on the issue following allegations that some of the purchasing agents of the co-operative have cited the price reduction campaign as a reason for demanding lower prices from agricultural producers in Ostrobothnia.
Johan Åberg, the executive director of SLC, the Swedish-language sister organisation of the Central Union of Agricultural Producers and Forest Owners (MTK), revealed that such demands were brought to his attention at a meeting attended by roughly 70–80 agricultural producers in Vaasa on Monday.
- S Group cuts prices of over one hundred home-grown vegetables (10 January, 2017)
The S Group has described the accusations as serious and promised to deal with the issue with due diligence.
Alarotu told that the retail co-operative has looked into the issue and contacted all of its purchasing agents but has yet to obtain further information about the situation. He also admitted that it is possible that the allegations are indeed warranted.
Åberg, in turn, underlined that the retail co-operative has repeatedly given assurances that the price reductions will have no impact on producer prices. “Producers are appalled and angry that these declamations were almost immediately forgotten,” he said.
Aleksi Teivainen – HT
Photo: Jussi Nukari – Lehtikuva
Source: Uusi Suomi