Co-op boss says supply issues ‘still a huge challenge’ amid product shortages

The new boss of the Co-op has warned that supply disruption continues to be a “huge challenge” amid shortages of broccoli, lettuce and sunflower oil on the retailer’s shelves.

By Andy Moffatt
Thursday, 7th April 2022, 2:54 pm
Updated Thursday, 7th April 2022, 2:54 pm

Interim chief executive officer Shirine Khoury-Haq, who will permanently replace Steve Murrells in the top job next month, told the PA news agency that “price rises are a given” as higher supply costs add to an array of inflationary pressures.

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Allan Leighton, chairman of the group, added that inflation was currently “in the ballpark of 4% to 5%” as the retailer committed to pumping money into keeping key items affordable amid the cost-of-living crisis.

The company said it had invested £18 million in price reductions over the past year and will hold the price of around 1,000 popular products.

Bosses said the business also saw significant cost increases away from its retail business, with inflation in coffin materials affecting its funeral arm.