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Morrisons repays suppliers after watchdog uncovers breach of code…

Its second breach of the Groceries Supply Code of Practice (GSCOP) in 2015 has led to Morrisons repaying suppliers and disciplining staff members after it was found to have been demanding lump sums of about £2 million from suppliers.

The grocery market watchdog, Grocery Code Adjudicator (GCA) Christine Tacon, said that Morrisons admitted to making 19 requests which exceeded any agreed deals with suppliers in infringement of the code’s policies.

Potentially, the supermarket chain could have faced a full investigation and a fine worth up to one per cent of more than £100 million, but Morrisons ‘swift action’ to address the issues led to Tacon calling off the need for an investigation.

Chief executive at Morrisons, David Potts said in a statement: “These events happened a year ago and since then much has been achieved to ensure they don’t happen again. However, we are sorry they happened in the first place. Since then, we have completely changed the way we work with suppliers. I have brought in a new management team who have modernised and simplified all of our buying practices. We have also reorganised and retrained our buying team.”

Previously, Morrisons were found to have breached the code when, in 2014, the supermarket was found to of overcharged 67 suppliers. As a result, the GCA publicised the case as a “case study” and the supermarket chain was forced to reimburse all suppliers involved.