Created on 10/9/2020 10:59:52 AM
Mississauga, Ontario (October 9, 2020) — Food, Health & Consumer Products of Canada (FHCP) today pressed candidates in British Columbia’s ongoing election to support an enforceable code for Fairness and Accountability in Retail (FAIR) Practice and correct damaging behaviour by Canada’s grocery giants that puts B.C. farmers and suppliers at risk. More than 63,000 British Columbians work in agriculture, seafood, and food processing alone.
Just five retailers control more than 80 percent of grocery and drug sales in Canada. Retail giants have exploited their power imbalance for years to force farmers and suppliers to carry disproportionate costs and risks, including recent aggressive moves to force farmers and suppliers to pay for big chains’ physical and online expansions. This harmful behaviour also disadvantages independent and smaller grocery retailers.
Michael Graydon, Chief Executive Officer of FHCP, commented:
“British Columbia cannot afford to continue allowing Canada’s retail giants to push farmers and suppliers into an impossible situation. Costs are precariously high, and mega-retailers are refusing to treat farmers and suppliers fairly.
Ultimately that leaves consumers in British Columbia and across Canada with fewer, less innovative, and more expensive choices in drug and grocery stores and puts the stability and security of Canada’s food and essential goods supplies at risk.”
Enforceable codes of conduct proved effective when similar conditions threatened the sustainability of grocery supplies in other countries, including the United Kingdom. FHCP is asking provincial and federal authorities to support Fairness and Accountability in Retail (FAIR) Practice Codes to ensure Canada’s grocery supply chain is transparent, efficient, and equitable for all.
FHCP joined six other leading agricultural and food organizations (Canadian Federation of Agriculture, Dairy Processors Association of Canada, Food and Beverage Canada, Canadian Beverage Association, Canadian Horticulture Council, Baking Association of Canada) in August calling for “federal and provincial governments to implement a code of practice in Canada to check this arbitrary conduct from large grocery retailers, review all current fees, penalties, and after sale deductions, and to protect Canada’s agri-food sectors.”
Nationally-representative polling released October 8 by the Dairy Processors Association of Canada (DPAC) supported the groups’ call to action. DPAC found that large majorities of Canadians know limited competition in grocery retail does not benefit consumers, want more “Made in Canada” products, and support government intervention to increase fairness and growth in Canada’s food system.
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About Food, Health & Consumer Products of Canada
Food, Health and Consumer Products of Canada (FHCP) is the voice of Canada’s largest manufacturing employer. The food, health, and consumer products sector employs more than 350,000 Canadians across businesses of all sizes that manufacture and distribute the safe, high-quality products that are at the heart of healthy homes, healthy communities, and a healthy Canada. Visit OnEveryShelf.ca to learn more.