Friday, 30 March 2012

Granville, f-f-f-fetch your cloth !

Attended a cross party, round table discussion this afternoon hosted by the Scottish Grocers Federation. It covered a wide range of topics such as alcohol licensing and fees, minimum pricing, business rates, the economy, planning rules and retail crime. A lot of the smaller "convenience" stores face huge challenges ; competition from the big supermarket chains, bureaucracy (sometimes necessary), increased utility costs, increased rates, low income shoppers having less to spend. It all adds up to a very difficult environment. Yet, I know from my own experience that the "corner shops" are much loved and needed by local communities. Perhaps we need to love them a little bit more, or we might lose them.

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