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Amazon at risk of investigation over grocery supplier treatment

Amazon at risk of investigation over grocery supplier treatment

Amazon is facing a formal investigation from the Groceries Code Adjudicator after it found “many suppliers do not believe that Amazon is complying with the Code”.

According to the GCA’s annual survey, less than half of respondents, which directly supply the online giant, believe it “consistently or mostly complies” with the Groceries Supply Code of Practice.

As a result, its perceived Groceries Code compliance score has fallen from 59% to 47%.

The GCA told the online retailer that it must take “swift and comprehensive” action to demonstrably comply with the Code and that it will be monitoring the changes Amazon is making and its impact on suppliers to determine whether they are sufficient.

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GCA Mark White said: “Amazon must ensure suppliers understand the changes it has made since its designation and in response to these survey results, and make any further changes that are needed to ensure Code compliance.

“I will not hesitate to launch a formal investigation if appropriate and necessary to ensure Amazon is treating its suppliers fairly and lawfully. I encourage suppliers to continue to confidentially tell me about the issues they are facing with Amazon.”

An Amazon spokesperson said: “We are very disappointed by these results and we are committed to improving them. Amazon takes the Groceries Code extremely seriously and we have introduced robust compliance procedures for our suppliers.

“We have made a series of improvements to our grocery supplier experience since last year’s results, with clearer explanations for cost price increase decisions, minimum periods for de-listing, and the launch of a major upgrade for handling invoice disputes.”

The ecommerce titan added that the business will make further changes “with faster time-frames to resolve more types of financial disputes, as well as strengthened account management support for smaller suppliers”.

“There is still more to do. We are committed to working with the Groceries Code Adjudicator, building long-term sustainable relationships with our suppliers, and continuing to create opportunities for suppliers of all sizes to reach millions of customers in the UK and around the world,” the spokesperson added.

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