Tag Archives: GCA

GCA opens investigation into Co-op

Groceries Code Adjudicator (GCA) Christine Tacon has launched an investigation into Co-operative Group Limited, believing it may have broken the Groceries Supply Code of Practice (the Code).

After escalating her concerns with Co-operative Group Limited in line with her published collaborative approach to regulation, the GCA has decided that an investigation is necessary to fully understand the extent to which the Code may have been broken and the root causes of the issues as well as their impact on suppliers.

The investigation will consider the extent, scale and impact of practices which may have resulted in suppliers being de-listed with no, or short, fixed notice periods unilaterally imposed by Co-operative Group Limited without due consideration of published GCA de-listing guidance, particularly in relation to a project called ‘Right Range; Right Store’. It will also consider the extent, scale and impact of practices which may have resulted in the introduction of charges without reasonable notice to suppliers, such as depot quality control and benchmarking charges.

Christine Tacon said, “It is now important that suppliers provide me with information to help my investigation. I am looking forward to hearing what they have to say about whether they have experienced any of the issues now being investigated and if so, the impact on them of the Co-op’s conduct. All information I receive will be treated with complete confidentiality.”

Jo Whitfield, CEO of Co-op Food, added: “We care deeply about our relationships with our suppliers and we are very sorry that in these two areas we have failed to live up to our usual high standards. We are already addressing the issues with the GCA and our suppliers and we hope the investigation will help bring to light any additional cases so that we can put these right as quickly as possible.”

Photo Credit: Co-op – Picture by Jon Super

The post GCA opens investigation into Co-op appeared first on Hort News on 14 March 2018.

Morrisons apologises for Groceries Code breach

Supermarket Morrisons has apologised to its suppliers after it was found to have indirectly required suppliers to pay lump sum payments in breach of the Grocery Suppliers Code of Practice (GCSoP).

In a clarification to the Code issued on 20 June 2016, The Groceries Code Adjudicator (GCA) said that following evidence supplied in June and July 2015 there was evidence that there may have been a code breach and that it wrote to ‘Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc Chief Executive Officer alerting him to the issue. As a result, Wm Morrison Supermarkets plc immediately launched an extensive internal investigation, including reviewing 66,000 emails, interviewing employees and taking disciplinary action where appropriate. Further training for staff on negotiation techniques permitted by the Code was immediately put in place, with particular focus on variation to existing Supply Agreements.’

Morrison’s chief executive David Potts said the retailer has “completely changed the way it works with suppliers.

“These events happened a year ago and since then much has been achieved to ensure they don’t happen again. However, we are sorry they happened in the first place,” he added. “I have brought in a new management team who have modernised and simplified all of our buying practices. We have also reorganised and retrained our buying team.”


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GCA to change levy model

Groceries Code Adjudicator Christine Tacon has announced to the way the levy which funds her office is collected from the ten retailers covered by the Grocery Suppliers Code of Practice (GSCoP).

Up until now the annual budget of £1 million has been split evenly between the ten retailers, with each paying £100,000. Under the new formula, 70 per cent of the GCA’s budget will be split evenly as before, with 20 per cent based on the market share of the retailer. The final 10 per cent will be based on anticipated workload due to each retailer, based on historical issues.

Due to these changes the smallest contribution will now account for 7.5 per cent of the total with the largest representing 17 per cent. In addition Ms Tacon is requesting £2 million for the year to cover the costs of potential investigations. Any unused funds will be returned to retailers at the end of the year. While Ms Tacon refused to name which retailer would be making the largest contribution, she did say that it would be £302,000 this year.

A full report on the GCA’s annual conference will appear in the August issue of The Vegetable Farmer.

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