The introduction of the Adjudicator Bill in the new session of the UK Parliament is an important step towards securing fairer treatment for overseas workers along supermarket supply chains.
As member of the Tescopoly Alliance, Banana Link welcomes the Government’s commitment in the Queen’s speech to introducing a Groceries Code Adjudicator Bill to establish a new independent ombudsman to ensure supermarkets treat suppliers fairly. This is an important step towards a fairer food chain that works for consumers, producers, animals, the environment, small shops and supermarkets alike.
Four years ago, the Competition Commission found that supermarkets force „unexpected costs and excessive risks“ onto their suppliers. These practices threaten to reduce the quality and choice of grocery goods for consumers. They can prevent producers from investing in sustainable farming practices; push small companies out of business; and ultimately could lead to higher prices in shops.
To prevent these harmful effects, the Competition Commission introduced a Groceries Supply Code of Practice, and recommended an Adjudicator to enforce it. The Code has been in place for over two years now, but no Adjudicator has been created to ensure supermarkets are respecting its provisions.
The Adjudicator has overwhelming public support and is backed by all the major parties, and a draft Bill has been examined by two select committees. This means it should pass through Parliament quickly and without controversy.