“The main problem with the supermarket code of practice is that it”s weak, vague and loosely worded. But it would be quite simple to improve its effectiveness.
“The reason why the OFT laments a lack of evidence to assess whether the code has been effective or not is that the code does not require the additional particular terms” to which suppliers are often subject, to be confirmed in writing by the supermarkets to the supplier.
“If it did we would now be discussing what the industry already knows – the existence of of clear evidence which shows how the disproportionate power of the major multiples is damaging suppliers.
“The principle of a code remains valid but to really make a difference it needs to include:
“Making it a requirement for the supermarkets to provide such written confirmation is not onerous. But it is a step which would significantly improve the transparency in the buyer/supplier relationship.”