Tesco voted Britain’s worst

Ken

Make More Margin’s Ken Simpson

Ken Simpson is a retail expert, Director of Make More Margin and was also a judge at the recent Retail Industry Awards.

Exclusive to The North Somerset Business Leader he rounds up the latest retail related news.

Horsemeat

With all the talk of Horse meat and Pig DNA being found where it shouldn’t, local butchers are seeing a welcome patter of new footfall.

I have long argued that the hard hit family budget can be best helped by cooking from scratch with quality ingredients.

For what people pay for ‘ready meals’ to feed a family of four for one meal they could produce enough food for two or even three days.

The smart butchers will be offering cooking tips and recipe ideas to these new customers.

Thumbs down for Tesco

So Tesco has been voted Britain’s worst supermarket – this is no surprise to many in the trade.

Poor availability, poor quality and poor service was the verdict. It will be interesting to see how Tesco react to this.

The call for “all till trained staff to the checkouts” seems to ring a bit hollow.

Illicit tobacco

The trade in illicit tobacco products continues to increase, with over 50% of retailers stating they know where to get cheap imports.

Not only does this cost retailers their livelihood it costs the treasury billions in lost revenue, and puts smokers lives at even more risk.

Perhaps the lack of response when this has been reported to HMRC and trading standards is putting retailers off whistle blowing.

Biting the hand that feeds you

And staff theft is on the rise. A survey by the ACS (Association of Convenience Stores), covering 3,465 outlets, found the number of incidents rose in 2012 by 88%.

This can take many forms from ‘grazing’ (eating the goods) to taking cash or stock.

My past experience tells me that it is quite often the one you least expect, and trust the most, that may be taking you for a ride.

Retail prognosis

2013 has continued to see a flurry of ‘big brand’ retailers go to the wall.

Out of the carnage Morrison’s have picked up 60+ new stores for their fledgling M- Local convenience store chain.

I hope that they are offering to jobs to those displaced through no fault of their own.

And we end as we begin

Finally I am interested to learn how Tesco plan to source their meat closer to home, following the horsemeat scandal.

Over the past decade supermarket practices towards their suppliers has driven many British beef and dairy farmers to bankruptcy.

It will take a long time to revitalise the supply chain. I sincerely hope that in their rush to bring home the bacon and beef they give farmers a fair price for their labours.

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