Will Labour fail us again with the Supermarket Duopoly?

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Labour have started their reform of the obscene Supermarket Duopoly…

Govt Helps Supermarket Shoppers Get A Fair Deal – New Zealand Government

Hon Dr David Clark
Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs

Urgent Budget night legislation to stop major supermarkets blocking competitors from accessing land for new stores has been introduced today, Minister of Commerce and Consumer Affairs Dr David Clark said.

The Commerce (Grocery Sector Covenants) Amendment Bill amends the Commerce Act 1986, banning restrictive covenants on land, and exclusive covenants on leases. It also makes existing covenants unenforceable.

“This is a major first step in delivering on our commitment to ensuring New Zealanders get a fairer deal at the checkout,” David Clark said.

“This legislation stops supermarkets from engaging in the anti-competitive land wars we’ve seen, where they buy up land or dictate the terms of leases to block their competitors from getting a foothold in the area.

“This practice leaves customers without choice and sees suburbs and shopping centres with only one option. An example of this is Ponsonby, in Auckland, which is only serviced by one provider.

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“Limiting supermarket options for consumers severely restricts their ability to shop around for a better range of products, and of course, a better price.

“This legislation is a clear signal of how seriously the Government’s is taking this issue. We’re tackling a root cause of the problem that prevents an even playing field for new competitors to enter the market.

“The Commerce Commission’s market study found competition is not working well for consumers in its current state. In fact, it found major grocery retailers are earning excess profits of around $1 million a day. Something needs to change.

“This is just the first part of the Government’s response to the retail grocery sector market study. I expect to release information about further steps the Government is taking to improve competition shortly,” David Clark said.

…like everything with Labour, first great timid baby step followed by fucking nothing.

The most egregious abuse of duopoly power has been this anti-competitive land war they’ve both waged to stamp out competition for pure monopoly rentals.

The cost of living crisis is hurting the very voters Labour promised to be transformative for.

The list of tax wonkery Jacinda descends into when listing the tinkering around the edges Labour has done that seems to believe everyone struggling is a certified tax accountant who are doing their taxes weekly is a farce.

The Left have done sweet fuck all for the material hardships of poverty, housing, inequality and climate change.

$27 a week for 13 weeks is not a fucking solution!

As I have pointed out tirelessly, while Labour saved us from Covid, they haven’t saved us from the ruthlessness of the under regulated free market.

I have argued over and over that we will see double digit inflation this year and that asking kiwis to endure more isn’t a political solution.

They need to hope that their basic costs will come down.

They need to believe a new Supermarket backed by the Government could do that.

Covid taught us food security matters and a Supermarket chain that embeds a cheaper food security while supporting local supplies is a necessity to correct a broken market!

Government should enter into a deal with Iwi to stock a new chain of Government/Iwi Supermarkets that champion local produce at better prices for the consumer and

We need a kiwi subsidy on all local produce to recognize that producers have already used water and created local climate changing gases to create their product and as such consumers have already paid a price just to get the product to their table.

We should feed the 5million here first before boasting about feeding 40million world wide!

Calls to ‘feed the 5 million first’ before exporting NZ food

People are going hungry even though New Zealand produces enough food to feed 40 million – and it’s spurring calls for the country to “feed the five million first”.

Almost 40 percent of New Zealand households experience food insecurity, while 19 percent of children live in households that experience food insecurity.

Poverty researcher Dr Rebekah Graham said while working on her thesis on food insecurity, she interviewed a woman who walked for 90 minutes each day to get a free community meal.

A state owned 3rd supermarket chain would do more for providing a cheaper means of living to all kiwis who have food security issues. It would do more for welfare than any single PM since Savage.

History is calling Labour. To date you have had nothing to show beyond crisis responses. We still have over 200 000 kids in poverty, over 22000 on emergency housing lists, growing inequality and a climate crisis with no real solutions.

A state owned supermarket chain that radically forced competition on base level cost of living for a vast swathe of New Zealanders would be a legacy worthy of Labour.

We need to be kinder to individuals and crueler to corporations.

The people are hurting economically, is the Left so bereft of ideas beyond middle class identity politics virtue signals that we have nothing to offer them?

As I have said time and time again, if you don’t want the poor to have their economic misery manipulated by the Right, then do something about their economic misery!

Let’s be clear, the Ukrainian war on top of the mega drought will send food inflation prices through the roof by December.

Labour need more than $27 a week for 3 months if they want the people to support them.

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65 COMMENTS

  1. Well by Christmas admit shortages and high inflation Labour will have realised that it has run out of band aids.
    Btw, Labour is not left, Labour is at best a centric liberal mishmash of self centred people, at worst its the hand maiden to National. They both feed of each other and by now i think it is quite clearly they depend on each other for survival. We not only need a different choice in supermarkets but also in Parties. L, N, G, A, TPM, are all the same type of people feeding of the same trough. And non of them actually want to get a real job and work for a living. They are not cut out for that.
    But enjoy your 27 NZD if you get them. Here is some processed gunk presenting as aged cheddar, you can afford a slice a day now. No bread though, that would be too rich.

  2. This would be a great project idea for any budding young documentary maker crew.
    Follow food in its raw form from the farm all the way to the toilet bowl.
    From the ram and the ewe to the lamb to the stew. From the seed to the carrot to the polite plate in Ponsonby.
    From the artificially inseminated pig to the slaughter house to the packet to the ship to the UK to the teeth to the stomach to the arse hole.
    Now follow the money. Follow the money from the farmer to the banker to the debts to the grave. Follow the money from the bank to the wank to the prim and proper to the loud, swaying, flesh spotter in the clubs and whore houses to the seats of power then back home to the mansions and penthouses in down town Manhattan or Sydney or Herne Bay to where ever there’s credit and crass lies you’ll force others to obey.
    You Boys know the style, the intemperance and lies. You know, don’t you? Aye boys?
    We’re all toys, really. For them to finger with their sticky, sweaty pink little hands. I’ve worked amongst them. The fat circus acts. I can hear them in their wheezing, lustful confidence at the thought of having us dangling, suffering, going without, blanking out then giving up on our kids because they’ve uncorked the anaesthetics of want versus need from the bottle. The vile little poison bottle they sprinkle their doubts, debts, self loathing and hate from. Labeled MSM.
    You wretched, filthy swine! You gleefully cruel, wasteful, lazy scum. You will be your own hero’s in your own fantasies because no one else will have you. Aye Boys?

    • It would be good for a farmer to be in debt that he/she could manage. To be producing on his/their farm and know that they are sure of getting reasonable returns. To be prevented from getting big-headed and buying up multiple farms beyond a few, not like the Crafars and others. That was what NZ tried to prevent at the beginning – when there was God. So long ago.

      c-b you are being eternally negative; stop for a moment where its warm on the farm and the animals aren’t under stress and think would you invite townies to your farm for visits as a business, along with other farmers similar to yourself. and build up a Country and Town friendship group, that worked two ways so you could get into town sometimes for enjoyment, an esprit de corps? I don’t see us going far eternally whingeing and moaning,

      I am looking at how I can do a bit and see us turn a compass point before I die or snuff it. Presently it is very dreary but there are lovely people around that I trust. They make me feel there us hope for something good. Some though are a bit hairy so to speak.
      noun: esprit de corps; plural noun: esprits de corps
      a feeling of pride and mutual loyalty shared by the members of a group.

      • @ GW.
        “c-b you are being eternally negative; ”
        I don’t think that’s entirely fair @ grey warbler and I think you might miss my point.
        Or, you’re one of Them and use logical fallacies to try to skew the narrative. Federated Farmers might show you their bag of unfortunate little dirty tricks FYI.
        Make what you can of unfortunate circumstances, soldier on, shut up, sit down, be quiet, you don’t know what your talking about etc. Isn’t that what you mean?
        Well, let me just say, and I’ll try to be as polite as I can be, but: ” Fuck that for a joke! ”
        You write “…stop for a moment where its warm on the farm and the animals aren’t under stress and think would you invite townies to your farm for visits as a business, along with other farmers similar to yourself. and build up a Country and Town friendship group, that worked two ways so you could get into town sometimes for enjoyment, an esprit de corps? I don’t see us going far eternally whingeing and moaning, ”
        Well, no. I’ve never been much good at bending double to kiss the arses of my oppressors and abusers.
        Let me be clear. I want to scrape the parasites of my back.
        The banks, the money lenders, the useless, all-bought-and-paid-for district councils with their sticky fingers, fingering away. The politicians, particularly national party politicians, the ones who are now resting up after long careers pissing up in whore houses while being seen coming and going into and out of Parliament.
        I want to see a farmer centric AO/NZ wide strike until the urban elites, intellectuals, lawyers, judges, narcissistic and sociopathic Big Business ‘Leaders’, politicians and sundry other hangers come crawling into the country and with their last breath beg for a spud and a sausage.
        Farmers have taken shit from worthless lessors for generations and that must stop.
        If it doesn’t? And this current trend of oppressing and exploiting the hands that feed you and you stays on this current wasteful, chemical laden, greed oriented and basically abusive vector then city people will go hungry and our little country will run out of primary industry exports earned funds. Or am I being eternally whingeing and moaning and negative.
        You @ Beige Babbler are a narrative. Are you even a human being? We can never know. I do know, however, that there are a lot of useless fuckers highly dependent on free farmer money to fuel up the Ferrari for a spin around to Devonport.
        Farmers?
        Strike. Now. Today. Demand all manner of full disclosure inquiry into literally every single element of every nuance of farming.
        Here’s another reason why it’s urgent and requires immediate attention.
        The Guardian.
        “The Nasa data scientist explains why inaction on the climate crisis pushed him to chain himself to an LA bank – and why trusting in the ‘people in charge’ is so dangerous”
        https://www.theguardian.com/environment/2022/may/21/peter-kalmus-nasa-scientist-climate-protest-interview
        Here’s one for you @ GW.
        Jonk E described this Pulitzer Prize winning journalist a Leftie loser and conspiracy theorist.
        “Those who fail to exhibit positive attitudes, no matter the external reality, are seen as maladjusted and in need of assistance. Their attitudes need correction. Once we adopt an upbeat vision of reality, positive things will happen. This belief encourages us to flee from reality when reality does not elicit positive feelings. These specialists in “happiness” have formulated something they call the “Law of Attraction.” It argues that we attract those things in life, whether it is money, relationships or employment, which we focus on. Suddenly, abused and battered wives or children, the unemployed, the depressed and mentally ill, the illiterate, the lonely, those grieving for lost loved ones, those crushed by poverty, the terminally ill, those fighting with addictions, those suffering from trauma, those trapped in menial and poorly paid jobs, those whose homes are in foreclosure or who are filing for bankruptcy because they cannot pay their medical bills, are to blame for their negativity. The ideology justifies the cruelty of unfettered capitalism, shifting the blame from the power elite to those they oppress. And many of us have internalised this pernicious message, which in times of difficulty leads to personal despair, passivity and disillusionment.”
        ― Chris Hedges

  3. I find it hard to comprehend that we can have a competition law, with two players clearly in a dominant position, that somehow allows this behaviour in the first place. It tries to prevent anti competitive pricing practices, price fixing etc, but seemingly doesn’t stop you from preventing competition from turning up altogether? You would have thought a clause in a contract or lease would be non binding if in clear breach of the law, but clearly its not. I wonder what other industries this could impact. If lawyers give this advice, it won’t be for just one or two clients ( unless I guess the supermarket legal teams are all in house)

    • the CC is designed to be a weak sop to public opinion…we’re looking into it being the standard evasion tactic for any and all pollies, it puts their personal responsibility onto officials, the CC isn’t meant to work so it doesn’t…bit like the tenancy tribunal really.

    • Wheel. My local small suburban shopping mall changed hands a couple of years ago. Some smaller shops closed. The new owners are connected to, and are possibly the same as the Indian owners of NWS. A shop occupier, whose rental has risen and who said that their business is struggling, told me that NWS has plans to build and expand, possibly to try and squeeze Countdown, only other supermarket, and generally cheaper.

      Other vacated premises in the small old claustrophobic mall, are now occupied by a vaccination centre run by a local medical practice about which I have reservations, and it’s gloomy pr entering the mall now confronted by queues of desolate-looking characters resembling escapees from the twilight zone, although the queues have eased off lately, and there’s no need to ask people to mask up compliance is 99.9%.

  4. “Government should enter into a deal with Iwi to stock a new chain of Government/Iwi Supermarkets that champion local produce at better prices for the consumer”
    Why the ‘Iwi’ deal in govt controlled supermarket?
    Food cheaper for maori than non maori?
    maori farmers produce only being sold, or higher price paid to maori farmers for their produce?
    Why does Iwi have to be involved in your supermarket nirvana?
    If anything Asians are, by minority population wise, the biggest food growers group…

    • I do love a good asian supermarket. So much so Im trying to learn some of the language so I can tell what 1/2 the stuff in them is. Currently just using the pictures in the packets, theres been the odd failure.

    • right, I hereby publicly state that I being of sound mind ‘identify’ as maori, everyone please take note, I might need confirmation on my 1st visit to race based market.

      • Gagarin Not “ race- based”, but “ ethnicity- based” and wonderfully flavour-based, with a genuine diversity of healthier dietary choices than splodgy old Brit foodstuffs. The tantalising aromas of Asian cuisine are an olfactory delight too. Be brave, try.

        • I actually love a good chinese or a curry after a drink and haunt my local asian supermarket..but I don’t expect a discount because of my ethnicity…

  5. With more than 11m food parcels distributed over the passed 12 months and umpteen food grants maxed out too. They could of cleared the debt owed to MSD. This would of had a better impact for those beneficiaries instead of any financial support given, is taken away by MSD weekly.

    Power and rents should be reduced by 67% for beneficiaries as their income equates to only 33% of the average wage.
    Peeps are trying to survive on 33% of the average wage when you are paying 100% the in cost(s) of living. This includes paying the bill for living in a motel room which costs $365m annually.

    But anyway, LINO are dog tucker. Too much virtue and not enough substance.

  6. This would be a great project idea for any budding, fearless young documentary maker crew.
    Follow food in its raw form from the farm all the way to the toilet bowl.
    From the ram and the ewe to the lamb to the stew. From the seed to the carrot to the polite plate in Ponsonby.
    From the artificially inseminated pig to the slaughter house to the packet to the ship to the UK to the teeth to the stomach to the arse hole.
    Now follow the money. Follow the money from the farmer to the banker to the debts to the grave. Follow the money from the bank to the wank to the prim and proper to the loud, swaying, flesh spotter in the clubs and whore houses to the seats of power then back home to the mansions and penthouses in down town Manhattan or Sydney or Herne Bay to where ever there’s credit and crass lies you’ll force others to obey.
    You Boys know the style, the intemperance and lies. You know, don’t you? Aye boys?
    We’re all toys, really. For them to finger with their sticky, sweaty pink little hands. I’ve worked amongst them. The fat circus acts. I can hear them in their wheezing, lustful confidence at the thought of having us dangling, suffering, going without, blanking out then giving up on our kids because they’ve uncorked the anaesthetics of want versus need from the bottle. The vile little poison bottle they sprinkle their doubts, debts, self loathing and hate from. Labeled MSM.
    You wretched, filthy swine! You gleefully cruel, wasteful, lazy scum. You will be your own hero’s in your own fantasies because no one else will have you. Aye Boys?

  7. There’s an easier solution – pick up the phone, call Aldi and ask them what they would need to open 100 stores across NZ.

    Then use the power of Govt to make that happen.

    Prices will fall significantly and quality will improve as it always does in truly competitive market

    • indeed it dOesn’t have to be aldi (they’re my personal preference) there are any number of europian retailers netto, carrefour, lidl etc…BUT aldi are in oz, they have a supply chain there so ‘over the ditch’ is a small jump in their chain.
      as you say ‘europian standards’ which aldi use by default across the world would improve the lowest common denominator shit food standards NZ has opted for…no more yellow bricks with the lying name ‘edam’

      BRIBE ALDI NOW.

  8. Does excess profits of 1 million a day…mean over and above normal’ supermarket profit margins.?
    There are 350 Countdown,New World and P&Save supermkts in NZ.
    Hard to believe that their profits are a measly $365mil a year.

    • excess profits mean a million a day OVER AND ABOVE what a comparable trader would make ANYWHERE else in the developed world….they make standard profits then a million on top of that…nice work if you can get it.

  9. Martyn….I don’t think you have fully thought this through…The New Zealand Government setting up a grocery chain is a very complex matter…for a start the site’s would have to be purchased and buildings built….There is a nation wide shortage of tradesmen thanks to Lockwood Smith getting rid of the perfectly good apprentice scheme and replacing it with the half hearted pay as you learn scheme we have now…..Once the eco friendly , zero carbon , recycled materials , building is completed the cycle stands and electric car charging stations would have to be installed.Of course there are only electric car parks and bike stands blended into the landscaping that reflect diversity and pedestrian comfort…The stock on the shelves would need to be GE free and organically grown and of course only vegan…Meat and dairy are a no no…Staff ratio’s would need to be drawn up and I think a well staffed HR department would be needed to make sure from the CEO down that woman were fairly represented and of course Iwi would need to be consulted….sexual harassment policy would need to be drawn up and issues like toilets for trans folk , baby changing stations and grey water recycling would need to be discussed…the LGBTO staff numbers would need to be organised and fair pay agreements would need to be drawn up and maternity leave , sick days and of course the employment contract act is out the window….and after all this is done the white male has to be selected to collect the trolleys from the cycle stands and fair trade latte area…..So you see Martyn….I don’t think you have thought this through…

    • Comrade, I enjoyed your comment, and that is the dream but I think you fail to appreciate my totalitarianism.

      The Commerce Commission can force the Supermarket Duopoly to hand over 30% of their entire industry.

      There is never an issue within Capitalism that can’t be stamped to death by the glorious heavy boot of the State.

      • That’s right,and they can nationalise this and any other…industry.
        What they really need to do is provide incentives to the Aldi’sof the world to set up..here.

      • I’m surprised the govt haven’t begged Aldi or similar to come here and set up here, and made it so juicy and temtping with tax breaks and compliance that they simply can’t say No. Do they, the bureaucrats, all have shares in Foodstuff?

        • (No longer) SK suggesting no remedy, because of assumed personal interest through shareholding, is wild speculation. On the other hand promising to reduce the bright line test, and reinstating interest deductibility when you personally own seven properties makes speculation look a little less wild.

      • Thank you Martyn for your reply……If the modern touchy-feely politician came across a pair of heavy boots I think there would be in time a gaggle of them…looking at these heavy boots and wondering what they were…”.Perhaps they are hats” , said the Māori party chap , as he took off his cowboy hat…” oh…it doesn’t fit..my heads too big , but it’s got bootstraps….I can tie myself up with them” …and off he proudly walked wearing his new hat….David Clark had a look at the other one…” It’s a garden ornament…my gran had one with flowers in it….it’s got a name on it…Muldoon….maybe he was a gardener “ he said….and off they skipped, back to running the country….

    • Question How do you start a small business
      Answer Give a bunch of civil servants a large business to run.

      • well capitalism isn’t working real well anywhere on the planet right now is it.

        show me a country with no market intervention I’ll show you a shithole…in lil ol NZ the fact that farmers don’t pay the costs of pollution is a subsidy, no CGT is a subsidy…

        • but they stand on EU REGULATIONS (I’ll just repeat that theu use those nasty lefty commie EU standards) of quality etc..bob. which is why people across the world US oz wherever love them, better quality at a reasonable price, what do the duopoly have to fear from another player if they are such lovers of freemarket capitalism…land covenants aren’t a deliberate ‘restriction of trade’ are they?

            • yes for EXPORT goods the point is the food we feed ourselves is low quality—yess yess yess we all know of this little bijou butcher or lovely little cafe but that’s not the common standard of NZ food

              the EU would turn back our domestic edam at the docks as unwanted plastic waste products.

              now I’m not saying that we’re worse than the UK or US but our domestic food could do with not being cheapest(production methods…not price) nastiest common denominator fare.

  10. ” s I have said time and time again, if you don’t want the poor to have their economic misery manipulated by the Right, then do something about their economic misery! ”

    God bless you Bomber but you know that deep down that being a light shade of blue they will never get behind another supermarket , or a financial tax , or build more houses and ensure no kiwi kid goes hungry because their parents can’t earn enough.

    They have had nine years in opposition and five years in government to show that the major structural changes that are needed to alleviate people’s economic misery will never be implemented.

    Transformation joins the list of other clichés like the brighter future for the rich , and build back better for the rich.

    Maybe ACT’s assault on the state will finally galvanise support to save what is left post 2023.

  11. The Labour government with a clear mandate has more people in poverty than when it started. Time for these Commies to exit stage left.

    • Tedheath. They’re not commies, nowhere near it. Sadly they’re firmly entrenched neoliberals, and that’s their problem, just like it is with old Hairless and Footloose.

      • Bob I think you meant ‘ absolutely they are National’. Tell me one thing you have heard National suggest that will fix the poverty situation? They didn’t even want minimum wage increases, certainly don’t want to fix housing, and in fact want to try and bake in the astronomical house price increases by winding back measures against speculation. That’s before you get started on ACT their coalition partner

          • That’s your answer Bob? Please inform then. If it’s going be they would reduce government spending National have not been that specific on material difference. When challenged on big spending items Luxon didn’t disagree with things like COVID relieve. He doesn’t think now is the time to do the health restructure but most of the big spending is clearing the DHB debt incurred to date and thinks 20 examples of bureaucracy is somehow way different than centralised bureaucracy. He doesn’t agree with three waters, but don’t think that cost is going to go away. He’ll leave that to local bureaucracy that in many cases doesn’t have palatable answers for rate payers moving forward. Granted he doesn’t believe in “corporate welfare” for climate change. That might be something different but I would put good on money on that tune changing next year as they have agreed with the omissions targets and god forbid the agricultural sector( let’s face it Diary being the friesian elephant in the room) is asked to do anything.

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