Sunday 29 May 2016



  1. One of the reasons I don't darken their door.
    The way they treat their workers and the managements attitude to customers leaves a helluva lot to be desired.

    1. Have to say that I've found their staff (with some exceptions) to be the least helpful of all the major supermarkets. I have a family member who works for them, and I know that their personnel policies stink.

  2. Well it does ensure that the bosses and shareholders get their bonuses and dividends.

    1. Yes, it seems to, although they had a bit of a scare back a couple of years ago!!!

  3. This is exactly what the Tories where pointing out for the entire lifetime of the New Labour years! And it's why we're raising the income tax threshold and the minimum wage far higher than anything Labour ever managed.

    Now you're seeing things like a blue Tris! :P

    1. *were not where (it's early morning where I am...and I've still to have my morning coffee/fag)

    2. I suppose we can add this to the deregulation of the banks as another great Blair/Brown wheeze.

    3. Well now Sean. There's a thing. Fancy me being a true blue!!!

      I seriously object to the way that Labour, the Coalition and the Tories stigmatise people who collect benefits and quote the massive social security (they all call it welfare, it makes it more demeaning) bill as a way of shocking the blue rinse brigade.

      The biggest "burden" on social security is pensions, which they should have, but didn't, fund out of oil (as Norway did). The next is housing benefit and working tax credits (some of the HB goes to pensioners whose pensions are too low for them to live on).

      We could get rid of that overnight by putting pensions up to the rate of say Jersey or Guernsey, having a minimum wage that actually represented the reality of the cost of living, and controlling rents (at least at the "affordable" range of the market). I welcome the increase in tax free allowance, although it is still so much less than it should be. By the internationally accepted measure of poverty the poverty level in the UK is around £16,000 pa. I'd propose that no one pay income tax until they are above the poverty level.

      I wonder if that makes me a true blue :)

      I'm all for a coffee first thing... but a fag Dean?

      I'll have to give you my anti-smoking lecture one day...

      PS: What's the coffee like in China?

    4. Aye PS. They were an absolute disaster one way and another. At least on the scale of Thatcher.

    5. The coffee? Put it this way, make sure you have a cafetiere in your apartment...

    6. I'm not fussy about most stuff, but coffee needs to be good, strong and black, with no sugar. (I'm telling you lest Munguin and I turn up chez toi, one day).

      Bad coffee is just plain insupportable. Indeed it should be a crime!

  4. So we're paying for them whether we go there or not? Sounds worse than the BBC, at least you have an option to avoid their tax.

    I believe Tesco used to encourage their workers to join a Trade Union, not sure if that's still the case.

    1. Well, you can avoid the BBC tax at the moment, but pretty soon, unless you live in the weird world on no online presence, they are going to try to make you pay.

      I wish them luck with that!

  5. There are lots of reasons not to buy at Tesco.

    It is not just the store staff we subsidize, but the suppliers and farmers get a raw deal from them too. They delay payments to farmers, suppliers and contractors - and I understand they lead the pack in this unenviable category. They were (and possibly still are) the leading store in offering cheap alcohol deals.

    They use tax dodges to avoid their fair share of local taxes and they take away business from all the local shops who do.

    Tescos is the only supermarket whose staff “decided” to use the plastic bag payout as a marketing tool for their stores. Local schools were told to get they parents to shop at their stores to get money from them.

    I can count the items I have bought from Tescos in the last two years on the fingers of one hand - and I was very dissatisfied with the items I did buy. It doesn't matter how cheap something is if it doesn't do the job it was bought to do.

    And that doesn't include the Horsemeat Scandal.

    As far as I can see there is no good reason to shop there at all.

    1. Yes, you make good points there, BSJ.

      They are a deceitful lot at Tesco (although I'm pretty sure that the other supermarkets are not far behind them).

      Here, way back maybe 10 years ago, they applied for permission to build a new store only about a mile from another, smaller store. Planning permission was withheld until they gave assurance that the small store would remain open.

      So eventually they got the permission and built their store.

      Within a short time they have closed the small store. Their lawyers must have found a chink in the agreement.

      A mile isn't far if you have a car, but the store was in a relatively poor area of the town and many people didn't have a car.

      Some small satisfaction was that the council a few years ago gave permission for another store in the area. This time ASDA. Tesco put in objections and they were discarded.

  6. tbh you could say the same about most of the supermarkets. More of the DWP's budget (i.e. folk's taxes) is spent on those in work than out of work. And remember that twit on Question Time crying because she voted Tory to reduce the benefits bill - for others - but wasn't very pleased when she found out it meant her benefits.

    What is needed is a proper living wage not the faux one Gideon brought in and rent controls. Plus breaking up the energy cartels that rig the energy market. Essentials are too dear which appears to be a failure of the free market does it not. Competition isn't helping the consumer - It's almost like the whole theory is mince designed to rip folk off and stop them fighting against increasing inequality.

    Don't think Dean will be calling me a blue one...

    1. Yes, absolutely. Morrisons, ASDA, Sainsbury, Co-op, and for those in the capital and Glasgow, Waitrose, aren't much better or worse.

      I just agree with everything you wrote there... I don't know why we put up with living in this corrupt country. Everything is designed to screw you for the benefit of the well off, while the abjectly poor are blamed for living in a world with which they haven't the means to cope.

  7. Actually this is a bit more complex than our comments assume. The supermarkets are able to bring large economies of scale in food distribution. You can shop in urban Scotland 24 hours a day, and can generally buy just about anything you want. They don't close on Sundays or take a Wednesday off.

    People are all quick to sign up for social "good" but privately they don't follow through. Present company obviously excepted. In practice people are keener on price than any other single factor when making purchases. So however much we all love to help poor shopworkers, we will go elsewhere if the higher wages are passed onto the price of milk.

    I have long been in favour of minimum wage, but it is arbitrary. It may cause companies to mechanise jobs, which would mean higher productivity - as measured - but may reduce demand particularly for unskilled labour. We may end up with a bigger bill for unemployment. We are about to find that out.

    I am keeping this brief. I could write an essay!

    But I don't buy butcher aprons from Morrison or the Co. I don't buy Asda at all. I still boycott Baxters and Tunnocks. And ( older readers will get this), I have not knowingly bought a single Argentine product in over 30 years.


    1. That's very true, SA.

      I think most of us HAVE to be conscious of price in our purchases, and comparing the prices in supermarkets with those of the village shop, you can see just what an advantage supermarkets bring.

      But do they have to do this at such a cost to staff, to suppliers?

      Perhaps if they satisfied themselves with smaller profits and gave themselves smaller bonuses... I don't know.

      The new "living" wage (I'd like to see Gideon live on it) has already caused companies to reduce payments to staff. I ran a story a few weeks ago about B&Q (again trying buying hardware stuff from a wee ironmonger and see how much it costs) and how they were dealing with the living wage:

      removal of time and a half pay for working Sundays,

      restructuring of allowances for working in high cost of living areas of the UK

      removal of double time for working bank holidays (now proposed to be 1.5)

      Removal of a summer and winter bonus equating to 6% of annual salary

      Maybe you SHOULD write an essay on it and get Munguin to publish it (terms and conditions apply and the Czech in the post may be a Pole or Belgian)?

    2. "The supermarkets are able to bring large economies of scale in food distribution."
      And right along with it are all the packaging costs, distribution costs and the wastage of food on a huge scale.

    3. True, but if you're poor, living on next to nothing, then a jar of coffee for £2,99 out of Asda or Tesco or Home Bargains is not really a choice, when one half the size is selling for the same price in the corner shop.

      I really do try to support local businesses where i can, but I couldn't afford to do it all the time.

    4. I think when it comes to food waste, the Scottish government should follow the French. It is obligatory for French supermarkets to give their left over food to charity.

      No ifs, no buts.

  8. If you are operating in a "free" market and the biggest concern for senior management is market share (which affects share price and hence their bonus payments) then you are going to react to your competitors activities which reduce operating costs.
    This means behaviour such as late payments to suppliers,wage and pension reductions and so on.
    Only through state intervention can we force everyone to operate on a level playing field designed to benefit society as a whole and not a minority of share holders.
    However,this is anathema to England's Tory party so don't expect change any time soon and we will continue to see people's living standards decline which in turn means less money to go around for spending on goods etc.
    Unfortunately when you are ideologically bound to a failed economic system,there are few options available.

    1. Yes, that's true.

      Everything is about profit these days.

      I refuse to use the self service tills and the other day in Sainsbury, walking past teh café I noticed that they have a place where you are supposed to take your stuff when you have finished eating.

      Next they will be asking you to wash the dished... and cook the food!

  9. Tris

    It's not just supermarkets and the likes B&Q who are looking at reducing terms and conditions to save money, sadly a few local authorities across Scotland are taking the same approach, Dundee included. All of which goes to make the poor poorer, the lower middle poorer which will result in a Higher Social Security Bill which will result in even more cuts to those who can least afford it.

    Tesco, I must admit I try to avoid using them but some things I do go there for. But there cut price price alternatves like Lidls that people can use and I am actually trying to use them more where I can. Sadly companies like Tesco will always exploit the system where they can, whats to stop them. I would like to see a lot of things happen. A real living wage, a years redundancy payments if you are made redundant and the repayment of all grants provided to any company wishing to leave any area. I would like to see the term welfare removed from the wording used and we go back to social security as that is what it is. There are other things and no easy soloutions but tesco are a disgusting company and I don't blame the floor staff. They work in a terrivle culture that breeds apathy.



    1. Yes, I know, Bruce. It really is shocking what they're doing to employees. It stinks.

      All of them are rotten. I reckon that Lidl and Aldi are a bit less rotten than the others.

      But blame the management every time. If people working there are grumpy and inefficient, the management should see that they're not.