Supermarket-branded convenience stores are not offering budget grocery lines in the most vulnerable areas of the UK, new research shows.
According to consumer watchdog Which?, having visited 35 Morrisons Daily, Sainsbury’s Local and Tesco Express stores with a list of 29 budget grocery items, 30 stores did not have any of the listed products.
Despite availability of these items often good in larger stores, the research found that its often the poorest people who rely on convenience stores the most, with 66% of those on less that £21,000 per year shopping in a smaller store at least once a week.
This comes despite 56% of shoppers who find their finances very difficult agreeing that they would benefit from more budget ranges being available.
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As a result, Which? has called on supermarkets to to put a greater focus on availability in convenience stores.
Head of food policy, Sue Davies said: “At a time when millions of people are struggling to put food on the table, it’s shocking that budget-range foods are not available to people who can’t get to a large supermarket.
“Everyone should have access to affordable nutritious food no matter where they live.”
She added that supermarkets should also “make it easier for all customers to work out which items offer the best value for money by making sure their pricing is clear and easily comparable.”
A Morrisons spokesperson told Which?: “Our Savers range has never been more important to our customers. In the last few months we have cut the prices of over 50% of the products, broadened the range by more than 10%, and we are currently updating and improving the packaging.
“We believe that our customers appreciate the value, breadth, quality and availability of the range more than ever.”