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Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall to fight against ‘bullying' supermarkets

28 February 2007 by
Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall to fight against ‘bullying' supermarkets

Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall is heading a new campaign against "bullying" supermarkets, which he claims is destroying British Food.

Speaking in Westminster tonight the chef, TV presenter and real food champion will call for new powers to limit the supermarket chains' growth.

He is set to launch a campaign asking the public to write to their MPs and the Competition Commissioner to make five demands, ranging from a new consumer watchdog to stronger labour rights.

The campaign is backed by four campaigning groups: Supersized Supermarkets, Friends of the Earth, War on Want and ActionAid as well as the anti-Tesco website Tescopoly.

The Competition Commissioner is currently investigating whether supermarkets are abusing their dominant position.

Fearnley-Whittingstall told the Independent: "It's a major scandal that the supermarkets have been allowed to have such a corrosive effect on the local and ultimately national food culture.

"Local producers are bullied and even busted by the aggressive tactics of the supermarket whilst many shopping centres, once the heart of the community, have been standardised or gutted by retail totalitarianism.

"We need to shout loud for far tighter curbs on supermarket growth and for strong protection for suppliers and shopping diversity."

The key demands:

  • Block new takeovers by Tesco or other major supermarkets
  • Stronger planning policies to protect local shops and high streets
  • A legally binding supermarket code of practice to ensure fair treatment for farmers
  • An independent watchdog to protect the interests of consumers, farmers and small retailers
  • Rules to protect workers' rights at home and overseas

AWT and Hugh Fearnley-Whittingstall join fight to save fish >>

Fearnley-Whittingstall wins award for commitment to real food >>

Open letter to Prime Minister seeks support for children's food >>

River Cottage Meat Book >>

By Emily Manson

E-mail your comments to Emily Manson](mailto:emily.manson@rbi.co.uk?subject=Hug Fearnley-Whittingstall to fight against 'bullying' supermarkets) here.

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