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FTC Turns to Competition About Kroger/Albertsons Merger

Government agency wants to know everything about how a deal could change the market landscape.

  • According to a Wall Street Journal report, the FTC wants to know how retailers and wholesalers think about how the merger would change the grocery landscape. The regulatory agency is asking questions that involve product sourcing and pricing, online operations details, store labor dynamics, how the “own brands” program at Kroger and Albertsons work, and how shopper data is used.

  • The Kroger-Albertson deal is receiving more negative attention from those outside of Washington, D.C. A group of consumers have filed a class-action lawsuit and the Arizona Attorney General is looking into the merger. Unions representing more than 100,000 Kroger and Albertsons workers have been protesting the deal since it was first announced. There also has been two rounds of questioning from the FTC.

  • Kroger spent $950,000 on lobbying efforts last year, while

Albertsons dropped $2.2 million. Jeff Miller, who has ties to current House Speaker Kevin McCarthy (R-Calif.), has been lobbying on behalf of Albertsons.

SOURCE: Supermarket News, 3/15/23

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