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Brits opposed to supermarkets ‘branching out’

New research has revealed that 54% of Brits think that supermarkets are ‘branching out too much;’ the reason for the majority, 61% being the fear that independent retailers are being ‘left out of business.’


Brits opposed to supermarkets ‘branching out’

New research has revealed that 54% of Brits think that supermarkets are ‘branching out too much;’ the reason for the majority, 61% being the fear that independent retailers are being ‘left out of business.’



The research revealed a hostility amongst Brits towards supermarkets ‘branching out’ with their produce; with just over half, 54%, believing that they are ‘branching out too much.’ Of these, 61% claimed to feel this way as they feared that supermarkets were ‘putting independent retailers out of business.’ Despite this, only 31% claimed to regularly visit smaller independent stores for purchases.

The research was commissioned in order for to explore the relationship between supermarkets and their consumers; and how customers feel about the variety of produce now on offer by their local superstore. 1,782 people were subsequently polled, and asked a variety of different questions surrounding supermarket produce.

When asked the question, “Do you think that supermarkets have branched out too much in terms of what they sell?” 54% of respondents to the study replied ‘yes.’ These people were subsequently asked to select which produce they believe should not be available from their supermarket; the top five results as follows:

1)    Insurance (House, Phone, Travel)- 24%

2)    Mobile Phones – 19%

3)    Personal Finance (Credit Cards/Loans)- 17%

4)    Furniture – 10%

5)    Electronics – 8%

Narrowly missing out on the top five were clothes with 6% of the vote; and household furnishings (curtains, decoration) with 4%.

The main worry for 61% of those who claimed opposition to supermarkets ‘branching out’ was the fear of putting independent retailers out of business. However, only one third, 31%, claimed to regularly buy their groceries from smaller independent food stores; such as butchers and grocers.

For those who were adverse to supermarkets selling credit cards and loans; two thirds admitted it was because they did not ‘trust’ them to offer secure financial services. 91% of these further admitted that they would ‘only receive such services from a trusted bank.’ Of those who were adverse to supermarkets providing mobile phone contracts, just over half, 52% stated that they thought the phones on offer wouldn’t be the latest models; whilst a further 42% claimed that they didn’t believe supermarkets would offer the best deals.

Mark Pearson, managing director of, commented on the findings: “Although many see supermarket expansion as a method of making the shopping experience more convenient for customers, it appears that not all welcome the ever-expanding product list. It is right to feel concern for the independent retailers being left in the dark; however, translating this concern into actually visiting these smaller stores does not seem to be very common.”

 “I think that it’s important to remember that price will usually triumph against other factors; perhaps the reason why independent retailers often lose out to the larger supermarket chains. We offer discounts for both larger stores and independent retailers however, so our aim is to make sure that people come to us first to see what savings can be had; as this ensures a fair playing field for all retailers.”

“I believe supermarkets branching out is a positive thing for consumers and, as people do have the option to shop for things such as furniture and clothes elsewhere, there shouldn’t really be an issue. At the end of the day, it’s a matter of personal preference and all supermarkets are trying to do is offer as much choice as possible for shoppers.”

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