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Supermarket price-hike stories are unfounded, says Consumer Council

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REPORTS of supermarkets hiking up prices of certain items as a result of the COVID-19 crisis have so far been unfounded, the chairman of the Consumer Council has said.

Carl Walker

Carl Walker says he received reports from Islanders about six specific products but when he checked, he discovered that the cost of the items had remained the same.

He also made reference to a meeting he held with supermarket leaders earlier this month, who, he said, gave him a guarantee they would not be ‘foolish enough’ to try and profit from the current peak in demand for goods.

Mr Walker’s comments came in response to an image of a nine-pack of Andrex toilet roll for sale in Checkers Express for £7.41.

‘In this instance that particular photo was taken in Checkers Express which is a convenience store, so they are more expensive than regular supermarkets, as they are open for longer hours so have higher wages to pay, among other reasons. Andrex is also a premium brand of toilet roll,’ he said.

‘And when I checked with SandpiperCI, I found out that the price of that item had not changed since September.

‘It is simply just a very expensive pack of toilet roll because it is the one of the most expensive brands and it is in one of the most expensive shops.’

However, Mr Walker added that he still wanted people to alert him to any potential price rises but to ensure they did it sensibly and ensure they had facts rather than comments on social media.

‘We will investigate everything people tell us and if there has been a price rise we will call people out,’ he said.

Ed Taylor

By Ed Taylor
Journalist

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