ACS joins industry bodies for Welsh hustings event

ACS (the Association of Convenience Stores) partnered with the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) and other food and drink industry groups for a Welsh hustings event (a meeting at which candidates in an election address potential voters) this morning ahead of the Welsh Assembly elections taking place on 6 May.

The event, chaired by Chris Kelsey, editor of Business News Wales, gave the opportunity for political parties to provide more detail about how their policies will support the food and drink sector.

The party representatives included:
Janet Finch-Saunders, Welsh Conservatives
Llyr Gruffydd, Plaid Cymru
Huw Irranca Davies, Welsh Labour
William Powell, Welsh Liberal Democrats
The party representatives were asked a number of questions, focusing on economic recovery, healthy eating and environmental sustainability/net zero.

During the hustings, ACS chief executive James Lowman asked party representatives whether the Welsh Government would consider ways to minimise the impact of obesity regulations on small format retailers and how industry could work in partnership with the Welsh Government.

ACS chief executive James Lowman said, “We are delighted to have been a partner for this hustings event and look forward to engaging with the next Welsh Government on the opportunities and challenges faced by local shops in Wales.”

ACS’ has outlined local shops’ key priorities for the next Welsh Government, which include:
• Work in partnership with local shops to support the provision of healthy and fresh products in local communities
• Work with the retail industry to create safer communities by tackling acquisitive crime and violence and abuse against shopworkers
• Deliver a Deposit Returns Scheme that complements Wales’ existing recycling infrastructure and works for local shops
• Reform the broken business rates system to incentivise investment, and level the playing field with online retailers.