NORTH Swindon MP Justin Tomlinson yesterday co-sponsored a Parliamentary Bill that would require supermarkets to release pricing data product by product and store by store. Price data is already publicly available, but the Bill would ensure that this information is presented in one standardised form and would be easily accessible in consumer-friendly apps.
The Supermarket Pricing Information Bill was introduced by John Denham MP and aims to achieve instant online access to supermarket prices.
This would enable shoppers to compare basic product prices, but also enable consumers to understand the differences in pricing between stores within the same retail chain, or variations in pricing of goods in different areas and regions. These apps would enable constant real time monitoring of special offers, and ensure that consumers get value for money.
Mr Tomlinson said: “In recent years, dubious pricing strategies and misleading offers have rightly been the subject of criticism.
“Real price transparency, though, would help to restore consumer confidence in supermarkets and strengthen the consumer’s ability to get good and fair deals.
“The greater level of transparency provided by this Bill would also reduce the need for expensive investigations by regulators like the Office of Fair Trading.”
Mr Tomlinson has been a champion of consumer issues since being elected, and this is the latest issue that he is pushing on to help consumers get a fairer deal in a tough economic climate.