The Competition Commission has said the Supermarket Code of Practice has not changed the way in which retailers operate.

A working paper, published on the CC’s website on Wednesday (23 May), said that the code had been drawn up in 2002 to ensure that buyer power was not abused.

Yet many of the practices which had promoted the code’s introduction continued to be carried out.

The CC said that statements from the grocery retailers confirmed that SCOP had not changed the way in which they interacted with suppliers.

Evidence submitted by suppliers regarding specific incidents also supported this argument.

“Our review of the SCOP and the supply chain practices of grocery retailers indicated that many of the practices that were identified in the 2000 investigation continue to be carried out.”

Farm leaders argue that the SCOP is ineffective and farmer suppliers do no use it to raise concerns because they fear being delisted.