Grocery, News | Coop reacts to Kiwi’s first price move: – Hurts confidence

Grocery, News |  Coop reacts to Kiwi’s first price move: – Hurts confidence

(The newspaper online🙂 – Customers should know who produces their food and where it comes from, so they can make informed decisions. We encourage everyone else, Kiwi and brand name suppliers alike, to do the same as we’ve done for years.

So says Kiwi competitor Harald Christiansen, Coop’s director of communications.

Undermining confidence in private brands

The background to the statement is that Norgesgruppen stores, like Kiwi, sell a number of private label (EMV) brands without informing the food manufacturer behind the product.

This applies to products from, among others, First Price and Eldorado. which is often categorized with Unil, the brand house of Norgesgruppen.

Customers of Kiwi, Meny, Spar, Bunnpris and, in many cases, Joker have to google the EFTA number to find out who and where the item was made.

By comparison, grocery stores owned by Coop, Rema 1000, and Oda are open about who produces all of their brands.

Stein Rømmerud, director of communications at Norgesgruppen, stated that the grocery giant stopped “hiding” information about who made the product last year.

But so far, Kiwi customers notice little.

When Nettavisen made a big deal about its same-store brand comparisons, Kiwi was left out since most of the merchandise was labeled Unil, Norgesgruppen’s own brand house.

A tour of the store today shows that more products have been tagged by the manufacturer. But First Price’s meat and puff pastry, boiled pork and ready-made Eldorado soups all lack labels.

Coop believes the competitor’s past practices have outgrown those:

– A lack of transparency can undermine trust in EMV. We think it’s very unfortunate because the EMV is important for creating competition on the shelves, something the Norwegian Competition Authority has said time and time again.

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It is difficult for consumers to compare

Coop is not alone in her criticisms. The Consumer Council believes this practice has had consequences for Kiwi customers:

– This practice, of course, has made it difficult for consumers to compare different products, says Olaf Kasland, specialist director at the Consumer Council.

Back in Kiwi, Nettavisen meets Nina Fallet. Usually choose store brands to save money.

She considers that First Price egg carton, which she just put in her cart, to be a Prior’s.

When Nettavisen told her she could verify it by Googling the EFTA number, neither we nor the Kiwi customer could find it on the carton.

Consumers must have the opportunity to make informed choices

But more than 100 suppliers of Norwegian brands such as Orkla, Coca-Cola, Nortura and Mondelez are members of the Grocery Suppliers Association (DLF). Among other things, the association works for fair competition between brands.

Consumers must determine which goods will win the competition. Then consumers should be given the opportunity to make informed decisions, says Mette Hanekamhaug, Communications Director at DLF.

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Norgsgruppen: – Old packaging

– We totally agree that our tagging isn’t good enough. Norgesgruppen decided last year that we should define more clearly where the product is produced and who is producing it, says Rømmerud at Norgesgruppen.

He says they still have a lot of the old packaging already printed before the new one is in place. Many products in the Unil series in stores have already received new and improved labels.

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– When will Kiwi customers experience who is behind the merchandise on all Unil products?

– We don’t know how long it will take before the old packaging is phased out.

Norgsgruppen: – We don’t fall for criticism

Rømmerud says the practice of not mentioning the private label manufacturer is age-old throughout the industry.

Presumably, there was a desire for secrecy for competitive reasons, he says.

– How will you respond to consumers who have missed and are still missing information about the manufacturer?

– Like I said, we’ve changed our practices, and we agree it’s important to create trust and security around food.

– You do not answer my question? What do you want to tell consumers?

– There’s not a lot of drama in this one, and we haven’t had thousands of complaints about it.

– You still don’t answer my question. But let me put it differently. Does Norgesgruppen face criticism?

– No, we don’t.

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Dalila Awolowo

Dalila Awolowo

"Explorer. Unapologetic entrepreneur. Alcohol fanatic. Certified writer. Wannabe tv evangelist. Twitter fanatic. Student. Web scholar. Travel buff."

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