Dutch consumers face higher grocery bills

Dutch consumers face higher grocery bills

Prices in the Dutch retail and supermarkets are higher than elsewhere in EU.

Dutch retailers and supermarkets are currently experiencing a price increase of approximately 10% on one in every 25 products, as they are unable to procure goods from wholesalers in other European countries. This results from a  research conducted on behalf of the Ministry of Economic Affairs.

For instance, a liter of Cola may cost €1.50 in a Dutch supermarket, whereas it is priced at €1.07 in a German chain, according to NOS broadcaster. Products like chocolate spread, shampoo, and ketchup also fall into the category of items that can be obtained at a lower cost in Germany.

Of the 44 major buyers in the Netherlands, half are grappling with “territorial supply constraints (TSCs),” compelling them to purchase goods from the Dutch branch of the supplier or face outright refusal. A survey by research bureau Ecorys found that approximately 300 businesses encounter similar issues. All seven major supermarkets, including Jumbo and Albert Heijn, reported their inability to source A brands from outside the Dutch borders.

One complication faced by buyers is the requirement for products sold in the Netherlands to have Dutch labels. Online supermarket Picnic has navigated this by purchasing more affordable products in Germany and affixing Dutch labels, a practice called “expensive and logistically complicated” by researchers. To address this labeling challenge, the researchers propose the implementation of digital labeling via QR codes, although this may disadvantage those without smartphones or digital skills.

While an immediate reduction in supermarket prices is not guaranteed, the researchers anticipate that a European ban on TSCs would foster increased competition in procurement, leading to lower prices in the long run.

[Source: NOS on television NPO1 and News on RTL4]