9 July 1999

Asda price pledge

FEARS that Asdas planned tie-up with US retailing giant Wal-Mart will force down producer prices are misplaced, John Cleeland, Asda director of fresh produce, meat and poultry, told an audience at the HGCA enterprise awards.

The two retailers shared many aims, including the promotion of domestic produce, he said. Last December, Asda launched its £400m three-year campaign to buy British, and this would continue.

But more contracts would be signed under the cost-plus principle, which guarantees a fixed margin over agreed input costs, he added. By the end of next year the retailer wants to secure 25% of all fresh produce this way, said Mr Cleeland. &#42