Last month the government responded to proposed amendments on the Groceries Code Adjudicator bill and financial penalties were rejected.
You should read publications on this stuff! Apart from the comedy of MPs defining what an indirect supplier is, you’ll see the focus appears to be ‘fairness’ to the retailer. Have they have forgotten the Bill’s purpose? If you were being bludgeoned by a thug, they wouldn’t give you a shield in case you hit the assailant with it. A role for whistleblowers is also dismissed as the government is worried they may have a grudge.
I recently met Adrian Bailey MP chair of the relevant committee. He expressed surprise at behaviour suppliers see regularly from retailers. He acknowledged indirect suppliers will have secondary pressure but small supplier complaints will have to be bundled until they reach an undefined threshold.
Truth is, GSCOP can only do so much. Farming representatives need to gain the skills to deal with this pressure. Larger suppliers who can stand up for themselves do so by learning these techniques. This type of support should be a government priority before the life is drained out of our farming community.