In November 2020, the Government asked us to carry out a year-long study into whether competition in the grocery sector is working well, and if not, what can be done to improve it.
As part of our study we have looked at a range of things including:
how retailers deal with their suppliers such as manufacturers, producers, farmers and growers
competition at the supplier level of the grocery market
who consumers buy groceries from and who supplies those retailers
competition between retailers when selling groceries to consumers
what retailers charge consumers for groceries and how they decide on their prices, as well as the associated levels of service, product ranges and quality of groceries.
The full terms of reference for the study can be found here.
We published our draft report on 29 July 2021. Our preliminary finding is that competition is not working well for consumers in the retail grocery sector. If competition was more effective, retailers would face stronger pressures to deliver the right prices, quality and range to satisfy a diverse range of consumer preferences.
We have developed a spectrum of options for recommendations to improve competition in the retail grocery sector based on our preliminary findings.
The executive summary, our full draft report, external reports we commissioned for the study, and infographics on the draft findings, options for recommendations and themes from our consumer survey conducted in March can be found under the documents tab below.
Submissions on our draft report can also be found under the documents tab below.
We are required to publish our final report by 23 November 2021. After that it is up to the Government to decide how to respond.
Media briefing live stream
We held a media briefing on our Market study into the retail grocery sector draft report on Thursday 29 July which was publicly available through live stream.
To watch the presentation click on the link below.
We understand that some of the information stakeholders may want to share with us could be commercially sensitive and highly confidential. Anyone who has information relevant to the study can ask us to keep their identity and/or the information provided confidential and we can discuss any available protections with them.
If confidentiality is a concern, it should be raised when people first contact us so we can discuss their concerns as early as possible.
Further information about how we handle confidential information is covered in the following factsheet.
We will be seeking feedback from interested stakeholders throughout the study.
Information relating to our study, including our statement of process paper, preliminary issues paper, submissions, media releases, our draft report, external reports and a timeline for our current and planned consultation steps are available through the links below.
This view shows the latest stage in the project. Click on the circled dates to see details.
Navigate to other months, or scroll down, to see all stages.
Note: these dates are indicative only and are subject to change.