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Price Check: ‘Sawtooth’ booze pricing confounds consumers

Supermarket operators refuse to explain why the price of alcohol varies dramatically from week to week.

WATCH: Alcohol Healthwatch executive director Andrew Galloway speaks with Maria Slade.

Maria Slade Wed, 13 Dec 2023
Key points
  • What’s at stake: Supermarkets vary the price of alcohol dramatically week to week, exclusive pricing data shows.
  • Background: Supermarkets sell about a third of all alcohol by volume, and rely heavily on promotions to drive sales.
  • Key players: Countdown, Foodstuffs, Alcohol Healthwatch, Auckland University, Waikato University, NZ Alcohol Beverages Council.

When people’s incomes go up and the real price of alcohol goes down, they drink more, a study by Alcohol Healthwatch says.

This may seem like stating the obvious, but delve into the advocacy group’s 2021 report and the role supermarkets play in this trend is revealed.

Supermarkets sell a third of

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Contact the Writer: maria@nbr.co.nz
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Key points
  • What’s at stake: Supermarkets vary the price of alcohol dramatically week to week, exclusive pricing data shows.
  • Background: Supermarkets sell about a third of all alcohol by volume, and rely heavily on promotions to drive sales.
  • Key players: Countdown, Foodstuffs, Alcohol Healthwatch, Auckland University, Waikato University, NZ Alcohol Beverages Council.
Price Check: ‘Sawtooth’ booze pricing confounds consumers
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