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Market share of Slovak groceries is low

Retailers say they do not discriminate against Slovak food producers.

Illustrative stock photo(Source: Sme)

Slovak foodstuffs accounted for 39.91 percent of the grocery items on the shelves of retail chains in Slovakia late last year, according to a survey carried out by the Slovak Agricultural and Food Chamber (SPPK) in November.

“It needs to be said that we’re not having much success with increasing the share of Slovak food produce on the shelves of retail chains,” said SPPK chairman Milan Semančík, as quoted by the TASR newswire.

A total of 28 grocery items were under review in 54 stores belonging to eight retail chains.

Several surveys have indicated that the share does not cross the 40-percent threshold. The latest figure is actually 0.03 percentage points lower than in 2015, Semančík noted.

When it came to individual grocery items, eggs from Slovakia recorded the highest share of shelf space (72 percent), thereby remaining at the top of the list for the fourth year running. Milk, honey and mineral water followed at 63, 61 and 60 percent, respectively. No other item made it above 60 percent.

Read also:Shops still sell mostly foreign food

Only 54 percent of potatoes and 53 percent of bread and rolls sold in retail chains were produced in Slovakia. Slovak fresh fruit and vegetables made up only a third of the items sold in shops. Even lower proportions were seen in the categories of pasta, freshwater fish, oils and processed fruit and vegetables. At a low 21 percent, packaged meat came bottom for the third year in a row, TASR reported.

When it comes to individual retail chains, COOP Jednota again proved to offer the highest share of Slovak groceries, with 59 percent of what it sold coming from Slovakia. Next came CBA and Hypernova at 54 and 41 percent, respectively.

Billa and Tesco were neck and neck at 39 percent, followed by Kaufland at 37 percent and Metro at 29 percent. Lidl again came last at 17 percent, recording an annual drop of 2 percentage points into the bargain, TASR wrote.

The retailers associated with the Slovak Association of Modern Trade (SAMO) are disappointed by the confrontational tone the SPPK uses against the retail sector.

“There isn’t the slightest reason for retailers to discriminate against local suppliers,” reads the SAMO statement, as quoted by TASR.

They also pointed to the different methodologies of surveys published by the various organisations of food and agricultural producers, saying that showing the share of Slovak production by percentages is aimed against the big stores.

“The percentages hide the fact that when considering the actual number of items, the big stores offer more local products,” SAMO informed.

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