The European Antitrust Review 2013

Retail

07 August 2012

Effective competition in the retail sector is still the focus of competition authorities in Europe.1 As farming costs increased rapidly in 2007, so did producer and retail prices. Whether consumer welfare will be harmed by the price change depends on the reason for the price formation and price transmission within the value chain. Despite the fact that several variables will always influence the pricing level, the food market of the ECN-Network still requires national scope to understand the different pricing levels throughout Europe.2 As the retail sector, compared to the structure of the food industry, is quite concentrated all over Europe, different concentration ratios could explain the differences in the price transmission process from the agriculture level via the food industry and wholesale to the retail sector. In this article we will provide a short overview of the price level and price transmission developments of selected countries.