Ged Nash, the enterprise spokesperson with Ireland's Labour Party, has called on competition authorities to investigate what he claims is "potential price gouging" taking place in supermarkets.
Noting that inflation, particularly in food, has risen faster than wage growth, Nash called on the Irish government to use its powers under the 2007 Consumer Protection Act to explore the introduction of price caps on everyday purchases, a measure that has been seen in other markets.
"Prices are rising faster than incomes, so people will have less to spend on everyday essentials," he said in a statement. "So too are profits.
“In the meantime, far too many corporations like supermarkets are involved in reaping hyper-normal profits at a time that so many families are struggling. It’s time for the CCPC to investigate potential price gouging in the market to ensure that the wages of hard-pressed workers go further and for the authorities to examine how profit-taking is contributing to the inflation problem."
Read More: Irish Grocery Sales Growth More Than Double In February: Kantar
Price Of Food Shopping
Nash cited recent data that indicated that the cost of food shopping is likely to increase by an additional €1,200 this year, adding that be believes the price of essential items such as bread, milk, eggs and pasta needs to be capped amid soaring prices.
“We know that the ECB has said very clearly that one of the predominant reasons inflation remains so high is because of record breaking profits being taken by corporations," he added.
“The price of production hasn’t changed. In fact input prices are falling but prices remain inexplicably high. It’s not good enough that supermarkets and others can continue to reap massive profits when too many are barely getting by."
© 2023 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Stephen Wynne-Jones. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: European Supermarket Magazine.