Tesco Ireland says high Irish prices damaging reputation
Tesco Ireland has said that comparisons with Northern Ireland prices are damaging its reputation and sales, according to reports in the Irish Independent. A confidential document sent out to suppliers suggests the chain is looking to source all international branded goods directly through its UK supply network, in order to help narrow the gap. "Consumers, media and Government associate Tesco Ireland almost exclusively with price differentials between Northern Ireland and Ireland," it said. "Having invested circa GBP3 billion (USD4.46 billion) in Ireland, the damage to the Tesco Ireland brand by our almost exclusive association with the retail premium versus Northern Ireland is unacceptable," the document added. As a result like-for-like sales have been “well below expectations” particularly on branded goods. The move is likely to affect most branded packaged goods such as soups, cereals, jars, toiletries, nappies and baby products, not fresh products such as meat and milk, which are usually sourced locally. Tesco Ireland spokesperson Dermot Breen confirmed the move but added that it would not impact on Irish produced goods, which would continue to be sourced in Ireland. The switch to purchasing through the UK is reported to be nearing completion.
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