Support for a Facebook page
started by a Tauranga man urging shoppers to boycott
Countdown supermarkets has trebled overnight.
The number of "likes" leapt from 1000 yesterday to more than
3000 after allegations by Labour's economic development
spokesman, Shane Jones, that the supermarket giant is
blackmailing New Zealand suppliers into paying to keep their
products on its shelves.
The Facebook page "Boycott Countdown" was started by Nevan
Lancaster a week ago, in response to Countdown's Australian
parent company, Woolworths Ltd, dropping New Zealand
suppliers from some of its own brand product lines in
Australia, in favour of local suppliers.
"It just sticks in the craw a bit. I believe in free trade
but it's got to be fair as well," he said.
"It's like, kick New Zealand."
Mr Lancaster wants people to stop shopping at Countdown and
instead give their grocery dollar to locally-owned producers
"Basically if our goods are not good enough to be sold to
Australians, then the company is not good enough to sell to
us," Mr Lancaster said.
"Go to your local butcher, green grocer and supermarket."
The page gained momentum after Mr Jones made his claim of a
"Countdown shakedown" in Parliament yesterday.
- By Julia Proverbs of
the Bay of Plenty Times