Co-op food retail: an organisation that has expanded in the wrong areas?

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Gary Greenwood, analyst at Shore Capital comments on the Co-op Group’s food retailing: “It just looks like an organisation that has expanded in the wrong areas . . .“

Food sales were down 0.7% on a like-for-like basis. Overall, the group reported losses before payments to members, the equivalent of pre-tax profit for a plc, of £599m, in the 53 weeks to January 5 . . .

It could expand by offering a range of local and organic food

ursula lidbetter2Ursula Lidbetter, the independent Lincolnshire Co-operative’s innovative chief executive, has overseen this transition and their stores now stock a wide range of local food.

The co-operative’s meat procurement policy “which supports local farmers and reduces food miles” has a Business in the Community Award for Excellence.

ursula lidbetter lincs co-op food

Co-operative stores in this part of the West Midlands are not attracting those who are aware of the risks inherent in non-organic meat and dairy products and those vegetables which can be permeated with pesticides.

The Co-op and other stores should also reconsider their acceptance of GM animal feed because non-GM feed is  available to buyers  – see producer’s information – who offer reliable contracts to producers, as many Europeans do, instead of gambling on a cut price on the ‘spot’ markets.