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Spanish consumers seek tax cuts on fresh food

Spain's main consumer organisation has called on the government to suspend taxes on the sale of basic foodstuffs to combat the sharp rise in supermarket prices. The proposal echoes that of supermarket chains and the conservative opposition People's Party as a means of combating annual food price inflation that hit 13.8% in August, the highest since 1994. Earlier this month, Spain's labour minister tried unsuccessfully to persuade large supermarket chains to offer a basket of fresh produce at prices fixed until January.

Yolanda Diaz won initial support from a part of the government for her bid to secure an agreement with supermarkets, but retailers rejected the move saying they were already making "an extraordinary effort" to shield consumers from rising costs, such as energy.



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