What is GSCOP?
The Groceries Supply Code of Practice (GSCOP) is legislation which came into force in February 2010 and was intended to protect food and drink suppliers to major supermarkets from being treated unfairly.
GSCOP regulates the behaviour of the top ten grocery retailers, Aldi, Lidl, Morrisons, Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Asda, Marks & Spencer, the Co-Op, Waitrose, Iceland, their subsidiaries and, since November 2019, Ocado (a collective known as the ‘Designated Retailers’).
How does GSCOP impact suppliers and retailers?
GSCOP applies to every supply agreement a supplier enters with one of the Designated Retailers, and regulates:
- Variation to the supply agreement
- Changes to the Designated Retailers supply chain
- Delay payments for goods
- Contribution to marketing costs, buyer visits, artwork, store refurbishments/openings and staff hospitality
- Payments for shrinkage/wastage
- Listing/distribution fees
- Forecasting errors and when compensation is payable by the Designated Retailers
- Designated Retailers tying suppliers to third party goods
- Payments for better positioning of goods
- Customer complaint charges
- De-listing periods
- Dispute resolution
Where can I get GSCOP training?
The Designated Retailers are legally required to train their buyers on GSCOP annually. However, around 57% of suppliers have received no GSCOP training. If you are in the 57%, then 43% of your competitors have an advantage over you.
We hold regular training sessions, for details of our next session, please contact firstname.lastname@example.org
Mark Jones, Partner, Head of Food and Drink
Mark is a dispute resolution solicitor who specialises in food and drink law. He is probably the most experienced GSCOP solicitor in the country having, since 2009
- Assisted retailers in establishing GSCOP procedures/policies.
- Developed training programmes for retailers.
- Trained retailers and suppliers on GSCOP.
- Acted for retailers and suppliers in countless GSCOP disputes.
- Advised retailers in responding to the Competition and Markets Authority (‘CMA’) market enquiries in relation to how grocery sector operates.
- Acted for retailers and assisted with responding to GCA concerns.
- Advised suppliers as part of the GCA’s investigation.
- Acted for retailers who the CMA is seeking to designate as ‘Designated Retailers’.
- Challenged the CMA’s decision to designate retailer in the Competition Appeals Tribunal and the High Court.
Gaining in-house experience at Morrisons and Iceland, Mark has an unparalleled knowledge of the grocery sector and also acts as a consultant to grocery sector businesses.
News & ViewsView all News & Views
GSCOP, 'reasonable notice' and the 12-week myth
As the UK’s designated retailers continue to scale back the number of products they sell and look to achieve better deals from suppliers, we see more and more queries relating to reasonable notice in relation...
How does GSCOP affect a food supplier’s contract?
In a recent article for Business Inspired Growth, Solicitor Mark Jones discusses how the Groceries Supply Code of Practice (GSCOP) affects a food supplier's contract when trading with the top retailers such as Asda, Tesco, Morrisons,...
Booker - The first wholesaler to be covered by GSCOP?
In May 2015, it was announced that Booker, the largest British wholesaler, was buying Musgrave, the owner of Londis and Budgens. The deal is subject to regulatory approval. It is said the deal will add...
The Groceries supply code of practice may be extended... but not by much
The Grocer revealed last month that the Government is to consider extending the role of the Groceries Code Adjudicator, Christine Tacon (the ‘GCA’), to cover a host of food and drink retailers, wholesalers and hospitalities...