In the papers this week 29 Aug – 4 Sept 2009

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Pictured: The 48 Irish producers at a workshop in Lidl HQ in Tallaght, County Dublin (Photo by Andres Poveda)

Tesco to stop using 'Change for Good' slogan after 11 September; new D4 Stores faces planning probe; supermarkets shamed for most litter



4 September 2009

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John Gibbons wrote in The Irish Times that it was time for Tesco to change its tune on Unicef, criticising the retailer’s use of the children’s charity slogan as further evidence of the "out of control" power of the multiples.

Gibbons has set up a blog to monitor and comment on big retailers’ actions in this country, using a slogan he has "never heard of anyone else using:" www.

Tesco MD Kenny Jacobs complained in The Irish Times that the paper’s opinion writer had made "continuous incorrect statements" about the retailer, as it has now reached an agreement with Unicef Ireland to no longer use the slogan ‘Change for Good’ after 11 September. Tesco will also support Unicef Ireland’s ongoing campaign with Pampers to eliminate maternal and neo-natal tetanus, and host an in-store fundraising opportunity.

Litter is twice as prevalent at supermarkets than at other commercial sites, according to Irish Business Against Litter (IBAL). The Irish Independent reports the group has named and shamed some of the country’s best-known retailers for not cleaning up entrances, car parks and pavements of unsightly litter. While Aldi and Dunnes had no comment to make, Tesco, which prides itself on its green credentials, has said it would "redouble" its efforts.

Gayle Killilea, wife of well-known developer Sean Dunne, attempted to secure maximum coverage this week for her new Ballsbridge retail venture, D4 Stores. First up, it was billed in the Sindo as "the answer to the prayers of the ladies who used to lunch, but who now much prefer to ‘Lidl’"

It wasn’t long however before the supermarket on the former Jury’s Hotel site was facing a planning probe. The Irish Independent reports that Dublin City Council received a complaint in relation to an alleged unauthorised change of use of the premises.

Meanwhile, The Evening Herald questioned the ability of the store, which is partnered with the Barry Group, to match Lidl on value. A survey by the paper found an average basket of groceries costs €32.56 more at D4 Stores. In fact, it costs 40% more to shop at the former society diarist’s supermarket.

Business news website Business World carries Killilea’s response to Dublin City Council. Instead of describing the store as a discounter, she said, "D4 Stores is a convenience store not a supermarket, it is primarily ancillary to the hotel and for the use of over 1,000 customers who use the hotels on a daily basis." She claimed it falls within the Z1 residential zoning, which permits neighbourhood stores, and hit out at "certain local politicians creating unnecessary, self-serving histrionics about the opening."

Despite the market gloom, a range of Irish and international retailers are planning new openings in the Irish market. The Irish Independent reports discount retailer BuyLo plans to open a number of outlets in key population centres.

A Longford businessman has applied to the high court to block part of the new Charities Act. The Longford Leader reports Thomas McNally, the owner of one of Ireland’s largest distributors of mass cards, MCC, wants the act restrained because it confers a Church monopoly on mass card sales. The State will not prosecute mass card producers until after the High Court has made its ruling.

The Irish Independent ponders whether Superquinn founder Feargal Quinn might return to the aisles once more? He is after all, one of the very few Irish businessmen who remain cash rich following the property crash.

Following its acquisition of the Tennent’s lager brand, C&C is "big in Scotland" according to The Irish Independent. The lager has a 55% share of the on-trade Scottish lager market and about 25% in Northern Ireland, leading investors to mark C&C’s share price up by almost 17%.

The government has been criticised over its reluctance to enact an amendment to the Conveyancing Law Bill, which will allow for downward rental reviews within the retail sector. The Cork Independent quotes Labour Party spokesman Ciaran Lynch on the "ongoing absence of downward rent reviews" in the bill, which is set to come in on 1 October, as placing retailers "in limbo."

The price of pepper is set to rise, according to The Telegraph (UK). Commodity analysts Mintec have found the wholesale price of black pepper increased by 17.4% to $3,210 (€2,251) a tonne on the wholesale market in the past week alone, after climbing more than 30% in recent months.

Tea prices are also set to climb 10 to 15% higher in 2010 from current record highs. The world’s largest tealeaf producer, Mcleod Russel, has forecast this will occur because crop failures by main exporters have depleted global inventories.

Marks and Spencer is close to appointing a headhunter to start the search for a new chief executive to replace Sir Stuart Rose next year, reports The Financial Times. Jan Hall of JCA is expected to be among the leading candidates to carry out the search.

More than 1.2 million children in the UK begin the day by eating junk food or smoking cigarettes instead of having a proper breakfast, reports The Daily Mail.
One in four seven to 14-year-olds snacks on crisps, chocolate or biscuits before going to school while one 14-year-old in 30 just has a cigarette.




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