It's not, not, not local....or transparent..

My friend Dave Cooper made the comment that the supermarket duopoly in Australia reminds him of the increasing grocery and discount department store domination of Walmart in the US market.

There are a number of recent research instruments (such as the one mentioned at this link) suggesting that Australians desire increasing transparency and localism in their food systems. It wouldn’t surprise me if there was a similar trend in the USA. But I am concerned at the tactics used by the big players to create an aura of “being connected to the local community and food system.” Shadow branding and faux local campaigns are amongst the tactics. One local manifestation of the “big two” near me has the word “local” in meter high letters on the fa├žade of its premises. Meanwhile the objects in the constitutions of these big players make no mention of sustainable local communities or food systems. The emphasis of course is on the highest return for the unknown (and un-local) institutional investor. If they have to throw the word “local” around a few times to help meet that objective, they will. 

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