GOVT SHOULD ADOPT FG BILL AFTER U-TURN ON BANNING UNFAIR RETAIL PRACTICES

Following reports that a statutory code of conduct for grocery retailers is to be introduced, Fine Gael Agriculture, Fisheries and Food Spokesperson, Michael Creed TD, today (Thursday) urged the Government to accept legislation his party has prepared to outlaw unfair retail practices like ‘hello money’.

“As usual the Government is coming late to the party after Fine Gael and others have long been seeking action on the unfair retail practices which are threatening the viability of food suppliers and jeopardising agri-food jobs. Fine Gael published a Bill last August to outlaw these practices. However, as recently as the re-negotiated Programme for Government, Fianna Fáil and the Greens were intent on pursuing an unworkable voluntary code. Nonetheless, the U-turn is welcome and I hope we are now moving in the right direction”.

“Reports suggest that the code will prohibit unfair practices, like demanding payments for advertising, displaying or providing selling space for grocery goods, under the merged National Consumer Agency and Competition Authority, as proposed by Fine Gael. There should be no further foot dragging. Now that the Government has accepted the thrust of our argument, I invite the Minister for Enterprise to adopt our Food (Fair Trade and Information) Bill 2009 without delay.”

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