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Loblaw is Freezing Prices on No Name Products to Ease Inflation

Loblaw is Freezing Prices on No Name Products to Ease Inflation

By Ambia Staley

Inflation has been hitting Canadians hard at the grocery stores recently, and Loblaw is hoping to ease the burden by freezing the prices on their no name line of products until early 2023.

In a press release from October 17, the company announced that they will be freezing prices on more than 1,500 no name items effective now through January 31, 2023.

In an email to PC Optimum members, Loblaw President and Chairman Galen Weston, said, "Anyone who regularly visits the grocery store knows that over the past year the cost of food has increased rapidly. Maddeningly, much of this is out of our control." After writing about the no name price freeze, he goes on to add, "In the weeks ahead, we'll continue to lower prices [through PC Optimum], in our flyer, and across our stores, all designed to provide immediate relief from escalating food costs."

In addition to the price freeze, Loblaw announced that it has increased support for food charities this year by adding hundreds of thousands of dollars to food banks and food recovery programs among other charity efforts.

No name products can be found at more than 2,400 stores, including Loblaws, No Frills, Real Canadian Superstore, Shoppers Drug Mart, T&T, Atlantic Superstore, and Maxi. The brand offers a wide assortment of products, including pantry items, apples, potatoes, butter, eggs and more for an average of 25% less than name brand products.

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    • how about there ack end price increase , meaning they shrunk the package size or package content and are still selling at the original price.
      in other words they took away product and did not lower the price.
      meaning there is more shelf space due to package shrinking,and loblaws sells that space to another product,non no frills at a hefty price
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    • Hehe, fine, ya, there ARE exceptions, but as you state it's rare, and do you know why?

      Because it's COMPLETELY opposite of what a capitalist market is set up to do.

      Many companies proclaim they are 'for the environment', or whatever else, but deep down they aren't doing it 'out of the goodness of their hearts' because, simply, they don't HAVE hearts. They're doing it because it brings them more money due to the marketing effect. People are willing to spend double or triple for an item at Whole Foods because they've done an INCREDIBLE job convincing the public that their product is 'better' for the planet, or health, or some other thing. Whether that's true of not in a particular example is not important.

      'The war against the straw' is a clear example of this marketing stuff. Companies proclaim from the top of mountains that they are eliminating straws, and then give you a plastic cup with a plastic lid, and a paper straw, that doesn't work nearly as well as the plastic variety, so they give you two since they know the first one will 'melt' in the liquid before you're done drinking. It's lip service, a marketing ploy to get you to spend with them.
      Insider info from one of my classmates. The pumpkin pie I'm told sold in the bakery from Whole Foods during Halloween is literally the same thing they sell at Superstore, Safeway etc. The ones in a white box wrapped in plastic that is. It's all marketing.
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    • Thank you for the lecture ;)
      You're welcome
    • Report Post
    • Hehe, fine, ya, there ARE exceptions, but as you state it's rare, and do you know why?...
      Thank you for the lecture ;)
    • Report Post
    • I would suggest you look at the management of companies like Patagonia or Vanguard and their commitment to customers and the planet ahead of profit.

      Yes, this is rare. But it is possible and it does demonstrate that it happens.
      No, I'm not holding my breath waiting for Galen to join the ranks of Yvon Chouinard and Jack Bogle.
      Hehe, fine, ya, there ARE exceptions, but as you state it's rare, and do you know why?

      Because it's COMPLETELY opposite of what a capitalist market is set up to do.

      Many companies proclaim they are 'for the environment', or whatever else, but deep down they aren't doing it 'out of the goodness of their hearts' because, simply, they don't HAVE hearts. They're doing it because it brings them more money due to the marketing effect. People are willing to spend double or triple for an item at Whole Foods because they've done an INCREDIBLE job convincing the public that their product is 'better' for the planet, or health, or some other thing. Whether that's true of not in a particular example is not important.

      'The war against the straw' is a clear example of this marketing stuff. Companies proclaim from the top of mountains that they are eliminating straws, and then give you a plastic cup with a plastic lid, and a paper straw, that doesn't work nearly as well as the plastic variety, so they give you two since they know the first one will 'melt' in the liquid before you're done drinking. It's lip service, a marketing ploy to get you to spend with them.
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    • They do want to do good. I'll NEVER understand why everyone seems to always forget that the JOB of a business is to make money. Making money IS them 'doing good' for themselves and their shareholders.
      I would suggest you look at the management of companies like Patagonia or Vanguard and their commitment to customers and the planet ahead of profit.

      Yes, this is rare. But it is possible and it does demonstrate that it happens.
      No, I'm not holding my breath waiting for Galen to join the ranks of Yvon Chouinard and Jack Bogle.
    • Report Post
    • Price freeze for 2 month, 3 months is totally meaningless, it 8anot like they raise price every months. They need to freeze price for 2 years, 3 years if they care about inflation.
      Not at all, it's a very effective form of marketing that's getting them tons of good press. It costs them basically NOTHING. It's win win win for them.
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    • If they wanted to actually do good they should have froze prices in Q2 onwards. Now at the end of the year is meaningless.
      They do want to do good. I'll NEVER understand why everyone seems to always forget that the JOB of a business is to make money. Making money IS them 'doing good' for themselves and their shareholders.
    • Report Post
    • Price freeze for 2 month, 3 months is totally meaningless, it 8anot like they raise price every months. They need to freeze price for 2 years, 3 years if they care about inflation.
      If they wanted to actually do good they should have froze prices in Q2 onwards. Now at the end of the year is meaningless.
    • Report Post
    • Price freeze for 2 month, 3 months is totally meaningless, it 8anot like they raise price every months. They need to freeze price for 2 years, 3 years if they care about inflation.
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    • What part of [from the CBC article] don't you understand?1. Galen may be powerful but he doesn't control the price of the plants that are used to make vegetable oil. Nor does he control global weather. Nor does he control Vlad Putin.
      2. Powerful as he may be, he doesn't control all the producers of vegetable oils. So if he raises the prices of his oils that leaves his competitors to steal market share by pricing their products lower than his.
      The only thing he can control is cutting out the middle man. That's where the freeze part comes in.
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    • It's not because of Galen? The Weston's *have an interest* in the company that makes Mazola and many private label brands.
      What part of [from the CBC article] don't you understand?
      "We've seen as a result of droughts around the world, but also the Ukrainian-Russian conflict, massive increase in the global price of grains," said Simon Somogyi, a food professor at the University of Guelph.

      Vegetable oil — a blanket term for oil derived from ingredients including palm, sunflowers, soybeans and canola — has been particularly hard hit, said Somogyi.
      1. Galen may be powerful but he doesn't control the price of the plants that are used to make vegetable oil. Nor does he control global weather. Nor does he control Vlad Putin.
      2. Powerful as he may be, he doesn't control all the producers of vegetable oils. So if he raises the prices of his oils that leaves his competitors to steal market share by pricing their products lower than his.
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    • Oh I see now. Interesting. Never knew.
      The Westons have a lot of business interests. They recently sold Selfridges (London).. but still control Primark. Have a lot of UK based business interests... quite interesting.

      Ron.
    • Report Post
    • Doesn't see anything about Weston family. It's a US based company.
      ACH Food Companies
      Parent Organization: Associated British Foods
      Owner of above: Wittington Investments
      Founder: W. Garfield Weston

      Ron.
    • Report Post
    • Yes, it's owned by ACH. Have a look and see who owns /controls ACH.

      Ron.
      Oh I see now. Interesting. Never knew.
    • Report Post
    • The Weston's don't own the company. Mazola is owned by ACH FOOD COMPANIES nothing to do with the Weston family.
      Yes, it's owned by ACH. Have a look and see who owns /controls ACH.

      Ron.
    • Report Post
    • It's not because of Galen? The Weston's own the company that makes Mazola and many private label brands.

      Ron.
      The Weston's don't own the company. Mazola is owned by ACH FOOD COMPANIES nothing to do with the Weston family.
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    • Loblaws is just telling you "get ready for some crazy prices in the next few months."
      No name products contracts are signed years in advance. No name and PC brands are their best selling brands from the beginning.

      They also make the most money off those brands so them "freezing" the prices won't affect their bottom line like they make it seem. They are definitely not "helping" you as those are the products they actually have CONTROL OVER the prices unlike items they get from other companies.

      So "freezing" them for months just means they will get the money they want instead of going through a loss stage most stores will certainly suffer in the next few months, as many people won't have money to shop for high priced groceries.

      Many companies have been doing this for years.
      "Locked", "Freeze" and "Multi buy" are all terms for the same money making scheme.
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    • No Frills everyday 3/$3 pricing on NN potato chips has also returned.
      Walmart: 1/$.97 & a better chip.
    • Report Post
    • Looks like Galen has been reading RFD and responding to our complaints about NN pasta!! 😂
      No Frills everyday 3/$3 pricing on NN potato chips has also returned.
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    • Why the cost of some No Name products in flyers is changing despite the announced price freeze

      https://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/why-the-c ... -1.6129191

      The response from Galen's PR spin doctor causes me to :facepalm:
      Tbh, they are complaining over a 4 cent difference. Too much time on their hands. And media sensationalism
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    • What a joke.

      I still shop at a lot of Weston-owned stores just 'cause they're everywhere and I still think PC Optimum is the best rewards program out there, but I have no problems going elsewhere if things are cheaper. These days No Name isn't even particularly cheaper than regular Loblaws.
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    • Why the cost of some No Name products in flyers is changing despite the announced price freeze

      https://www.ctvnews.ca/canada/why-the-c ... -1.6129191

      The response from Galen's PR spin doctor causes me to :facepalm:
      Interesting. Currently, NN frozen vegetables are $2 each. They can say the regular price is $10 and they are 80% off every day now.
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    • Who believes this sleight of hand trick?
    • Report Post
    • Given all the price increases on No Name. Better to spend a little more and get the branded quality or even better buy the branded when on sale.
    • Report Post
    • Looks like Galen has been reading RFD and responding to our complaints about NN pasta!! 😂

      This is YMMV since it loaded into my Optimum this morning.

      NNpasta.jpg

      NNdeal.jpg
      LOL..except he only did so at RCSS.
      Another funny thing...I know it's Wally Mart but their GV pasta...97cents and made in Canada. I just picked up a macaroni and a spaghettini and its taste/texture remind me of Primo.

      And as a side note, remember when he stated prices were being frozen at what they were at the time of the statement? Funny thing is, seems some of those "frozen prices" that were on specials, actually cost more now. EG 500gr. NN Cottage Cheese was special $2.49 @ No Frills here in Ontario at the time of the "immediate price freeze" went in effect. It was, I believe, $3.79 reg. price prior to that. (I remember because I price compare regular prices when out at Food Basics) Guess what..it is now $4.29!! And that is only a 1 of.
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    • Yes exactly. I know NN pasta is made in Turkey. And no, they get their flour from themselves as they are also the leading exporter of durham wheat in the middle east. As I told another, Turkey wheat prices have remained fairly stable these past years, and the Lira has fallen compared to CAD.
      I agree with this line as well "What people should be asking is why NN pasta comes from Turkey and not Canada where other Canadian brands come from." Then I would expect to see $1.59-$1.79 pkgs of NN pasta. Next time you are in a grocery section of a store, do some investigating. Products from China, India, Belgium (not just chocolate either). Then look how companies are trying to keep supply costs the same by shrinking packaging.
      Looks like Galen has been reading RFD and responding to our complaints about NN pasta!! 😂

      This is YMMV since it loaded into my Optimum this morning.
      NNpasta.jpg
      NNdeal.jpg
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    • I'm curious how many millions of dollars they sunk into coming up with this whole marketing strategy and on the marketing/advertising materials itself. The fact they're still running with it in all their stores despite being absolutely clowned for it suggests it's too much to simply just drop.
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    • Don't hold your breath waiting for any real action: Competition watchdog launches study into grocery sector amid rising food prices
      The Competition Bureau said Monday its study will examine to what extent higher grocery prices are related to changing competitive dynamics in the sector.

      It expects to explore how the government could act to combat grocery price increases by way of greater competition in the industry.

      It noted that the grocery sector is concentrated, with many Canadians buying from one of three companies: Loblaw, Metro and Sobeys’ parent company Empire Co. Ltd...

      The study will better position the Competition Bureau to evaluate future proposed mergers and acquisitions, but it’s unlikely to force any changes on the grocery industry now, said Sylvain Charlebois, a professor of food distribution and policy at Dalhousie University.
      Added: Competition Bureau to probe grocery pricing
      The bureau says the move isn't in reaction to any specific allegation of wrongdoing, but it comes as consumers grapple with food prices rising at their fastest pace in more than 40 years...

      Many factors have been blamed for the rapid escalation in food prices, including extreme weather events, higher input costs, and temporary supply chain stresses such as the current invasion of Ukraine. But the bureau says it wants to try to understand if there are any anti-competitive factors at play, so it's seeking answers to three broad questions:
      • To what extent are higher grocery prices a result of changing competitive dynamics?
      • What can we learn from steps that other countries have taken to increase competition in the sector?
      • How can governments lower barriers to entry and expansion to stimulate competition for consumers?

      The bureau says that the relationship between grocery chains and their suppliers will not be included in the study, something that professor Mike von Massow at the University of Guelph says is a missed opportunity...

      The bureau is seeking input from the public on the issue. Anyone wishing to contribute is invited to contact the bureau through its website before Dec. 16.
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    • Just making sure, this is the same corporation that fixed bread prices, causing most Canadian households to lose thousands over six years?
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    • Not necessarily. Galen's price freeze thaws out in February. After that prices could go down if the cost of the ingredients falls. This sort of thing happens all the time with commodities. Often a crop failure or similar reduces supply. Producers react by raising prices. This attracts new producers, perhaps in other parts of the world, who want to cash in on the high prices. That then results a while later in a flood of produce that depresses prices. And so it goes. This is covered in every introductory book on economics.

      That said, I'm not predicting that NN veg oil will return to $4.97. For all I know it could keep rising to $14.97 or even more. But that's not necessarily due to Galen's Greed™. It's more likely to be the result of market price fluctuations for veg oils.
      Last year was a really bad year for canola in Canada but this year there is a bounty, along with many other crops like wheat. Here's hoping.
    • Report Post
    • Read the article. It states vegetable oil as just an example so the same applies to everything. And don't tell me companies are selling this to us at a loss at this point.
      I did.

      You used vegetable oil as an example. The article says, "among the many items that have gotten more expensive in the past year, vegetable oil tops the list... The increase in the price of vegetable oil is the most dramatic example of a more general rise in food prices." That's why I responded to your post with a link to the article.

      Of course lots of other stuff, including both NN products and others, have gone up in the past year.
      And freezing the price means we will never see the costs go back to $4.97.
      Not necessarily. Galen's price freeze thaws out in February. After that prices could go down if the cost of the ingredients falls. This sort of thing happens all the time with commodities. Often a crop failure or similar reduces supply. Producers react by raising prices. This attracts new producers, perhaps in other parts of the world, who want to cash in on the high prices. That then results a while later in a flood of produce that depresses prices. And so it goes. This is covered in every introductory book on economics.

      That said, I'm not predicting that NN veg oil will return to $4.97. For all I know it could keep rising to $14.97 or even more. But that's not necessarily due to Galen's Greed™. It's more likely to be the result of market price fluctuations for veg oils.
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    • Most items I buy have gotten about 25-50% more expensive over the last year.

      Price freeze, right.
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    • Whoop de doo. Loblaws has already fixed their supplier prices for near term deliveries. They know their own costs will not be going up. So what are they bragging about? That they will not increase markups? It's just a promo to raise awareness of their house brand.

      Now, if they could freeze for a year that would be something . . .
      Yeah. I wish they froze prices a few months back. The NN 2L canola oil that used to be $4.97 is now $8.99. And freezing the price means we will never see the costs go back to $4.97.
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