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French supermarkets banned from super-low promotions

Supermarkets in France are no longer allowed to run “super-promotions” on any food product, under a new law, in a move that could cost shoppers hundreds of euros per year.

Under new rules that came into force on January 1 2019, supermarkets must not discount any food product by more than 34% of the original, full price.

The law is intended to ensure that food producers always get a fair amount for their products, and that distributors are not able to discount products to such a low price that farmers and producers effectively receive nothing.

The law also states that “buy one, get one free” offers are no longer allowed. Instead, customers must buy at least two units of a product, before they can get the third free.

And, from March 1, supermarkets will no longer be allowed to have more than 25% of their products on discounts at any one time.

Super-promotions will still be allowed in other aisles - including in hygiene, beauty, and household cleaning - but not on any food products.

One study suggested that the new rules could cost shoppers hundreds of euros per year, as they will no longer be able to buy food at rock-bottom prices.

Yet, the same study suggested that supermarkets may also be in line to lose €1 billion in extra revenue, as fewer super-promotions may lead to fewer impulse buys.

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