The French multinational Carrefour has been publicly denounced by the Union of Small Agricultural Producers and Ranchers (UPA) for conducting unfair commercial practices after the retailer gave Spanish strawberries for free to its customers. For UPA, this is a prime example of “sales at a loss”, since they are actually giving the product away.
The practice has outraged farmers, who have been protesting in recent days throughout Spain because of a huge profitability crisis due to the lack of fair prices. "The fact that the promotion is active in all of Spain, with the exception of Seville and Huelva, is causing even more outrage."
After a new meeting with the Minister of Agriculture, Luis Planas, UPA has said that these practices should be banned with a "brave and urgent" reform of the Food Chain Law. The idea is straightforward, they say. "We should prevent the destruction of value. These strawberries have had production, transport and distribution costs. This is a very clear example of destruction of value in the agro-food chain," they said.
Carrefour is one of the big companies that have not signed the code of good commercial practices in the food chain; a code that would prevent the company from committing these abuses with any food item, but which is a voluntary for operators. UPA has demanded that the company abandon these practices and “stop doing business ruining the growers.”