Monday, 1 September 2008

End of local food industry: Clairs

The former chief executive of Woolworths says he has concerned about the survival of Australia's food manufacturing industry.

Reg Clairs, who ran Woolworths from 1993 to 1998 and coined the 'fresh food people' catch-phrase, says there has been a greater emphasis on the retailer taking charge of the supply chain in recent years.

Mr Clairs said that many smaller suppliers have been squeezed out by global food manufacturers.

He says if that trend continues, local food manufacturers will disappear in 10 to 15 years.

"Globally we are seeing the growth of the majors and unless we are able to build a food manufacturing business in Australia that is sustainable, then ultimately the global manufacturers will take the power base," he said.

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