The research underpinning this report has been undertaken as part of a broader research project – the Supermarket Power project – funded by the Australian Research Council over four years, 2015-2018.
The project is an interdisciplinary undertaking drawing on empirical and theoretical research that aims to fill key gaps in the regulatory debate when it comes to understanding why and how the MSCs have developed as they have, the strategies that have contributed to their growth, the impact that changes over time have had in the industry and the role of regulatory schemes relating to competition and fair trading in the grocery sector. An important case study for the project centres on relations between the MSCs and their suppliers, and the ways in which those relations have been and are currently regulated. It is this case study that forms the basis of the report.
The project is based at the University of Melbourne’s Law School. Led by Professor Caron Beaton-Wells, a specialist in competition law, the other members of the team are regulatory studies expert Professor Chris Arup, economic historian Emeritus Professor David Merrett and sociologist Associate Professor Jane Dixon. The team is supported by Research Fellow, Jo Paul-Taylor.