Writer fears reduction in grocery competition

Questions why Sobeys would want to purchase Canada Safeway stores

Re: Safeway in Saanich, Oak Bay to be sold (News, Oct. 25)

I wrote to the Competition Bureau of Canada on June 17 strongly opposing the purchase of Safeway stores by Sobeys, owner of Thrifty Foods.

Frankly, I could not see why Sobeys would want to buy Safeway grocery outlets in Western Canada, except to reduce competition, raise prices and gain a monopoly in the foreseeable future. I am convinced this sale of Safeway stores is the beginning and will impact families in Victoria and the Saanich Peninsula.

I am disappointed with the decision of the Competition Bureau to allow the sale and I will write to them again. I am somewhat relieved that they ordered the sale of three Safeway stores rather than see the locals face potential closures.

I just hope these stores are purchased by strong grocery retailers such as Save-On or Loblaws or by local grocers who would give strong competition to Sobeys.

We need fair and healthy competition. I am afraid only time will tell.

Haji Charania

Saanich

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