Amazon could face probe over treatment of UK grocery suppliers, watchdog says

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Britain’s grocery regulator has warned Amazon of a possible formal investigation if it does not improve compliance with the Groceries Supply Code of Practice (GSCOP).

The Groceries Code Adjudicator’s (GCA) 2024 survey revealed that less than half of Amazon’s direct suppliers felt the company “consistently” or “mostly” followed the code.

The GSCOP, in place since 2022, aims to ensure fair treatment of suppliers by Britain’s largest grocery retailers.

Amazon’s compliance score dropped to 47% from 59% in 2023, placing it last among the 14 retailers. The GCA has urged Amazon to take swift action to adhere to the code, which restricts short-notice supply contract changes and mandates appropriate notice for ending supplier relationships.

The regulator will monitor Amazon’s changes to ensure they meet the required standards and has threatened a formal investigation if necessary.

Amazon has committed to improving its compliance, citing several recent enhancements, including clearer explanations for cost price decisions, minimum periods for de-listing, and a major upgrade for handling invoice disputes.

Further changes are planned, such as faster resolution of financial disputes and stronger support for smaller suppliers. The overall compliance scores for other retailers averaged 94%, unchanged from 2023.

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