CICRA (the Channel Islands Competition and Regulatory Authorities) has formally announced its plans to review the cost of groceries in the Channel Islands today.
The aim of the study is to investigate the costs involved in the supply and retailing of groceries in both Guernsey and Jersey and to provide consumers with greater transparency as to the reasons for higher prices. If higher prices are not commercially justified, CICRA will make recommendations to Commerce & Employment in Guernsey and Economic Development in Jersey as to measures that would achieve better outcomes for consumers.
The study will focus on all products sold at supermarkets (i.e. groceries), and not just food and drink.
CICRA Chief Executive, Andrew Riseley, cautioned that consumers should not expect prices to fall as a direct result of the study.
“There is a general perception that prices for groceries in the Channel Islands are too high. Our study will undertake a comprehensive comparison of prices for a range of groceries in Guernsey, Jersey, the UK and the Isle of Man. We intend to focus on investigating what causes differences in prices and to examine the extent to which these differences can be explained and justified.
“The main aim of the study is to provide more transparency to consumers; it is important to note that CICRA does not have the powers, under the competition laws in either island, to require that retailers reduce their prices. However, if there are steps that we can identify that may increase competition in this sector, then we would make recommendations to the relevant government departments.”
CICRA will be meeting with, and collecting information from, wholesalers, retailers and suppliers throughout the course of the investigation and will seek to publish the results in October once they have been shared with the States of Guernsey and Jersey. The Authorities will also be seeking the views of local consumers in Jersey and Guernsey and the launch of these surveys will be announced in the media in due course.
Category: Finance & Business