Tesco smash Irish egg producers, claim IFA

Tesco is manipulating the price of eggs with the intention of stealing the market share and smashing the viability of small Irish egg producers.

This is according to Irish Farmers Association (IFA) national poultry chairman Alo Mohan.

Speaking to Agriland, Mohan said the recent change in the price of eggs by the retail giant in the Irish market is “manipulating the market”.

“Tesco has increased prices for local branded eggs by up to 40 per cent per dozen in the past month while at the same time maintaining own-brand eggs at the original lower price,” he alleged. “This practice is forcing consumers who have had a preference to support locally branded eggs to choose Tesco’s own brand on price difference.”

He claimed small Irish egg producers’ sales to Tesco have plummeted by 50 per cent in recent weeks as a direct result.

“This makes branded eggs less competitive against Tesco’s own-brand products, and in producers’ view, this is anti-competitive as the primary producer gets no more of the extra margin foisted on the product.

“It’s a blatant attempt to manipulate the market and destroy the locally-produced Irish brand product.”

The IFA national poultry head has called on Tesco to immediately address the situation as producers cannot accept further attempts to undermine local brands.

He has also called on the Department of Agriculture to intervene, to bring forward a code of practice for poultry producers and retailers as a matter of urgency.

“This is not the first time Tesco has tried to manipulate the market,” he claimed. “It tried this two years ago and we, the IFA, ran a successful campaign against it and we intend to run a campaign against this price change too,” he added.

The IFA is set to meet with the giant retailer in the coming weeks to discuss the matter further.

Despite repeated attempts, Tesco were non-contactable.