Independent bakers worried at price cut

Colac’s Brandon Bakery Manager Khiem Dang hopes cheaper sliced bread at supermarket chains will not affect his business.

Colac independent bakers have expressed concern over a pending price war with supermarket giants.

Coles Supermarkets have reduced the price of bread to $1 a loaf, sparking industry fears over the livelihood of independent bakers.

Hulm’s Bakery owner Lindsay Hulm said his business was unlikely to suffer because it had reduced the amount of sliced bread it manufactured and sold.

But he said he feared for other independents who relied on sliced bread revenue.

Mr Hulm said he hoped smaller bakeries could compete by emphasising the advantages of buying from independents.

Thwaites Bakehouse co-owner Mark Thwaites said his business had tried to lessen its reliance on sliced bread sales, minimising the impact of the conglomerates’ price decrease.

Mr Thwaites said he hoped consumers would continue to support small businesses.

National Bakers Industry Association general manager Paul McDonald said he believed independent bakers could not compete with the $1 loaves and would find it harder to remain competitive, with the consumer being the ultimate loser.

The NBIA has called on the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission to investigate the matter.

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