January 30, 2011 at 6:59 pm #489102
Taken from SMH today:
Supermarkets accused of raising petrol prices to cover bread, milk cuts
January 31, 2011 – 3:31PM
A fuel monitoring agency has accused the major supermarkets are slugging motorists to subsidise their milk and bread war.
FUELtrac general manager Geoff Trotter said petrol prices rose by 19 cents a litre to more than $1.40 a litre over the weekend.
“In what appears to be a pretty co-ordinated move, it appears that Shell Coles express decided to move their service stations up in Brisbane, the Gold Coast and the Sunshine Coast,” Mr Trotter said.
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“They moved up to a price of 143.9 cents a litre and this was at a time the Shell wholesale price had actually come down.
“The effective Shell wholesale price was 124.37, which meant they were making a retail margin of over 19 cents a litre, which is extraordinarily high.”
The last time the petrol prices were above $1.40 a litre was in mid-2008 when the Australian dollar was about 98 US cents and the West Texas Crude price reached a record $US148 a barrel.
The price for a barrel of West Texas intermediate crude oil was about $US88, with the Australian dollar at 99 US cents, Mr Trotter said.
The dominance of the supermarket giants in food and petrol gave them significant power in the market.
“I think there is a connection between their grocery activities and their petrol activities because they control a significant market share of groceries and around 60 per cent of the retail petrol market,” Mr Trotter said.
“If there is an opportunity for them to cross subsidise, if they are giving away margin on bread and milk, fuel is a wonderful way to recover that margin.
“There was nothing happening in the Australian wholesale price or international prices to explain that jump across those markets to that level, except that Coles and Woolworths are involved in a price war in bread and milk.”January 31, 2011 at 9:16 am #489103
and to that article, I think there should be a regulatory body that forbids a huge margin of profit, unless they tax the beegeebies out of it! What ever happened to using the tax on fuel to fund the better roads scheme? I know that the roads around us are good, but some of those roads out there are extremely woeful and dangerous.
Pity the Independent commission against corruption can’t nab them for a price war and their offsetting the profits to be made elsewhere. I seriously hope that they make money enough to line their coffers and then be happy when they sleep, at the expense of the little people! Just makes me more determined to do my bit and grow as much food on my little 509m square block of dirt. hmmm think I should get a few mushroom boxes to put under my house, and take up a little of that space as well 😀January 31, 2011 at 10:13 am #489104
I think they need a dose of humility.
The important people in the food chain are the producer and the consumer. All the retailer really does is provide a bit of transport and storage. For that service, they deserve a small slice, but only small.
They use heavy handed tactics to cut the profit to the producers, which has sent a lot of Australian companies to the wall, at any decent labour cost they simply can’t compete with countries where the average wage is $1 a day.
The price fiddling is becoming unreal in Coles, a tin of branded tuna costs twice as much as the Coles version? Oh, but you can get them on special if you buy 10 at a time. Not much use if you didn’t want ten, is it? Maybe they would rather we only came in once a month so we don’t take up too much precious staff time.
Woolies has gone one further on staff time – the serve yourself checkout.
Tuna is a special gripe of mine, the price is rising at about 15% a year, and has done every year for the last 7 or so. Odd when inflation is running at 4% or less, isn’t it?January 31, 2011 at 10:37 am #489105
It’s disgusting isn’t it. I deliberately don’t use the self serve checkouts when I do my 2 month shop at Woolies for those things others don’t stock. I go to the checkout and make them earn their $$.January 31, 2011 at 11:42 am #489106
My son said in time all there will be in supermarkets are the people who put out the food and a few managers to make sure nothing is stolen.
There excuse is now that they can’t afford managers in the departments and will be cutting back. that is fine but when you get young ones doing the managers jobs big mistakes are made as they don’t have the expreience the managers have as they all have to go and do so many hours training and learning all about ordering etc.
Coles has a home delivery in some areas for mums who can’t get out
Saw on one of the current affairs shows last week about a new type of trolley that works out what you have spent and you work out what you want before you even get there on their web site and us a USB and it tells you where the food is. It is being trialed here in SA at a IGA store.
My husband is the only one who has sugar on and in his food. can’t break himof it. I use it in making cakes and biscuits I do use a lot of honey as well.January 31, 2011 at 12:11 pm #489107
In their ideal world we probably pick the stuff up from the producer ourselves, and just transfer funds equal to 100% markup to the Coles shareholders directly, thus saving them the bother of providing a service at all!January 31, 2011 at 1:32 pm #489108
Having worked as a checkout-chick, I spent most days looking forward to the day where people could check themselves out. I hated it!!
So, I love the self checkouts. 😀
It was different when you entered product codes and had to remember them. It was faster and it meant that not just any monkey could do it. You could take just a little pride in your work.. Then they introduced the touch screens and it slowed everything up terribly. Replacing staff became easier, training became faster, people needed to know less.. but why bother having register operators at all?
I’m glad they’re on the way out. I groan when at IGA and have to wait in line for the only checkout open.
Oh, and I’ve never been employed as a checkout operator.. it’s something you end up having to do around other duties. I’ve worked at 3 different Coles supermarkets, I started as a bag packer, been a retail trainee (mostly bakery), and years later, night-fill. It’s not bad work (aside from checkout), and it’s pretty good money.. just not a good career choice. 😛January 31, 2011 at 2:11 pm #489109
A report in today’s local paper said that Coles are going to sell bread for $1 a loaf and Woolworths will match the price. Local bakeries say they can’t produce a loaf for a dollar and worry about losing trade. The newspaper rightly pointed out that if Coles and Woolworths wipe out all the private bakeries in town, then they’ve got the field to themselves and can charge what they like. I hope supermarket shopppers consider the long term consequences before buying the short-term cheap bread.January 31, 2011 at 2:31 pm #489110
Robyne – depending why you use bi-carb. You can get sacks of it from produce stores, meant for animal use (dunno how), which is fine for cleaning etc. Works out cheaper than using the ultra-refined for humans stuff. ‘Course, for baking will still need the supermarket.
Purplehat, If making extra and freezing doesn’t work for you, then dedicate a day a month to make meals just for freezing. Personally I buy bulk meat, cut into bite sizes, and casserole with different sauces (curry, butter chicken, barbecue, soy&honey etc, either boughten or made, oven bake for an hour (four casseroles at a time) and then freeze. A few veggies and a re-heated casserole makes an easy meal for when you’ve been out all dayJanuary 31, 2011 at 2:38 pm #489111
Wazza post=303141 wrote: A report in today’s local paper said that Coles are going to sell bread for $1 a loaf and Woolworths will match the price. Local bakeries say they can’t produce a loaf for a dollar and worry about losing trade. The newspaper rightly pointed out that if Coles and Woolworths wipe out all the private bakeries in town, then they’ve got the field to themselves and can charge what they like. I hope supermarket shopppers consider the long term consequences before buying the short-term cheap bread.
:huh: I can’t even make a loaf of bread at home for $1. What on earth are they putting in it to get it at that price (or lack thereof)!January 31, 2011 at 3:03 pm #489112
Woolworth’s home brand bread is already only $1.10. If they’re going to make it $1.00, they won’t lose a lot of money anyhow…January 31, 2011 at 6:38 pm #489113
I can’t even make a loaf of bread at home for $1. What on earth are they putting in it to get it at that price (or lack thereof)!
Mistyhollows, they can’t make it for a dollar either. They are prepared to lose money on it to look like good guys for giving the shopper cheap bread. That’s the best take on it. The other is that this is predatory behaviour to drive small competitors out of business. They easily make up for the loss from their other grocery lines and of course their alcohol and petrol outlets. If you’re a local family-owned bakery making bread, you usually don’t own a servo or a liquor outlet to allow you to sell your main product at a loss. This topic makes me angry, and perhaps I shouldn’t say this, but when I talk to people about Coles and Woolworths and the benefits of buying local, nobody has a good word to say about the Big Two. But where do these people shop? Coles and Woolies! I’m sure these hypocrites will shed crocodile tears when local businesses get driven out of business.January 31, 2011 at 8:05 pm #489114
Hmmm, sorry, but personally I just can’t see how coles and woolies selling a loaf of bread for $1 is going to take away huge amounts of business from the local bakery.:S I think the bread they are offering for $1 is the bog standard homebrand white spongy sandwich stuff :sick: – I would think those who buy that type of bread likely already get it from the supermarket, not the bakery, as it is already cheaper to buy that kind of bread from them rather than a bakery. I think it is unlikely that people who already spend more for a decent loaf of bread from the bakery are going to be swayed by the stuff supermarkets are offering for $1. What I really don’t like is hiking the price of something totally unrelated (like fuel) to sell bread cheaper – if I don’t like the price of buying a nice loaf of bread, well I can make that myself at home…it will be a lot harder to make fuel for the car if I don’t like the price!January 31, 2011 at 8:29 pm #489115
Coles has slashed the price of its homebrand milk to $1 per litre (for a 2-litre container) and Woolworths is expected to follow suit. How are they doing this? According to Dr Glenys Hough, dairy consultant, Western Australia, an increasing amount of permeate will get added to fresh milk. Permeate is a watery by-product of dairy production and already makes up to 12% of some milk brands in supermarkets. Permeate is produced when milk is passed through a sieve (ultrafiltration) to separate the milk-sugar (lactose), vitamins and minerals components from milk protein. Permeate costs less for processors to buy than milk, so the two can be mixed to produce a cheaper product. Current milk labelling does not require processors to disclose top-up using permeate. A Senate Committee, looking at the dairy industry last year, heard evidence about permeate top-up and even that powdered milk had been reconstituted and sold as ‘fresh’ milk. The Committee recommended that labelling on dairy products should adequately and accurately inform consumers about the provenance, manufacturer and contents of the product, but I haven’t heard what happened to this report.January 31, 2011 at 9:36 pm #489116
It’s just the milk as far as I know. Loss Leader. The idea is for the consumer to make more frequent trips into the store to buy the cheap milk and then to impulse buy. Some Whizz Kid in his Ivory Tower thought that up. :S
According to my brother (who works in a dairy), the reason the permeate is put into the milk in the first place is due to government regulations which state that all full fat milk is to have the same quantity of milk fat and be of a consistent quality and standard. I think milk from different sorts of cows have different levels of milk fat and this can also vary depending on location and what the cows are eating.
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