Justin Trudeau tells grocery stores to lower prices, or he will tax them

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Canada’s Prime Minister Justin Trudeau has ordered major Canadian grocery companies to come up with a plan to “stabilize” prices of food. He has ordered them to come to Ottawa to meet with him, and given them until November to come up with a plan for lowering prices, or he will institute even higher taxes.

Trudeau told the heads of the five largest supermarket chains, including American stores Walmart and Costco, that they are to blame for high food prices.

“If their plan doesn’t provide real relief for the middle class and people working hard to join it, then we will take further action, and we are not ruling anything out including tax measures,” Trudeau said during meeting in London, Ontario, on Thursday.

“Large grocery chains are making record profits,” he said. “Those profits should not be made on the backs of people who are struggling to feed their families.”

The retailers have pushed back. While grocery prices have risen 8.5% in one year, retailers say the reason is higher costs from producers, suppliers, and transportation, as well as the war in Ukraine. Grocery stores typically work with extremely small profit margins of between 1 and 3%. They can stay in business only due to volume of sales.

“Rather than casting blame where the experts agree it does not belong, the federal government should look in the mirror,” the Retail Council of Canada said in a statement.“The government could take a number of steps to make food more affordable, including temporarily removing the carbon tax from farmers, food processors and distributors and cancelling government’s planned plastic packaging targets that could increase costs to grocers by $6bn a year.”

In addition to the plastic regulation, in 2021 Trudeau instituted a “carbon tax,” which he said would be capped at $50 a ton, but instead has tripled, driving prices up in Canada. He promised that 90% of the revenue from the carbon tax would be rebated to Canadians, but instead just 76% has been rebated.

Five main Canadian taxes increased in 2023 by hundreds of dollars per year for workers, employers, and consumers. According to the Fraser Institute think tank, Canada’s federal per-person program spending has reached unprecedented levels in recent years, “which puts a heavy burden on Canadian taxpayers who are ultimately responsible for footing the bill either through taxes today, or taxes tomorrow if the government allows debt to accumulate.”

58 COMMENTS

    • Giving grocery stores the tools to counter theft would be a good idea, lower import tariffs, lower all levels of taxes, deport 30 million illegal aliens, increase tax right-offs, end the war in Ukraine by winning it would be a dam good start.

    • It is leftist energy policies based on climate cult propaganda that are primary cause of escalating grocery prices. Mr. Trudeau need only look to himself and his administration for Canada’s problems. Add also for the US the printing of money with abandon.

    • You appear to be a communist. Who would you like to squeeze to lower prices? Should grocery stores go out of business because they cannot charge enough to stay in business? Or should suppliers and growers charge less to the grocery stores, so that they cannot make a living wage? Where do you suppose those savings will come from? How about we fix the economy and stop shutting it down by closing avenues of capital gain (such as canceling oil leases or closing down pipelines) so that everyone can make a living wage and be able to afford food? Just sayin’. It isn’t a problem with capitalism, it’s a problem with the anti-capitalists shutting everyone down. Or stay ignorant and blame hardworking folks for your problems, while you pontificate nonsense.

    • The main function of government should be to foster a free-market, competitive economy. The only time a grocery store’s pricing could be a problem is if has managed to corner its area market. However, as long as market competition exists consumers are protected. That said, wholesalers, processers, manufacturers and farmers must also compete. If competition becomes eliminated by monopolies or oligopolies at any level of the supply chain then consumers will suffer the consequences. Directly regulating the pricing of any entity in a competitive supply chain is a grave mistake…. it is treating a symptom rather than a problem. It only makes matters worse (empty store shelves like former Soviet Union).

    • The main function of government should be to foster a free-market, competitive economy. The only time a grocery store’s pricing is a problem is when it manages to corner its market. However, as long as market competition exists consumers are protected. That said, wholesalers, processers, manufacturers and farmers must also compete. If competition becomes eliminated by monopolies or oligopolies at any level of the supply chain then consumers will suffer the consequences. Directly regulating the pricing of any entity in a competitive supply chain is a grave mistake…. it is treating a symptom rather than a problem. It only makes matters worse (empty store shelves like former Soviet Union).

      • You too (hopefully) one day will be older and (maybe) wiser. May the younger generation show you more respect than you reserve for those, who brought you the world wide web, your computer, your cellphone and many other conveniences you take for granted.
        However since you are still all-knowing please enlighten us as to your thoughts on the topic of this article. Do you agree with Trudeau? Do you think government can be evil and greedy?? Come on all us Boomers are waiting with bated breath to receive your guidance……

    • That’s absolutely the worst, most horrific, short-sighted statement there is. “Well somebody has to do something!” . The worst atrocities in human history have been created by people with that mindset just acting out and running out and doing things without knowing what really needed doing, or the bothering to think about the consequences of their actions. This is liberal and leftist thought in a nutshell. A lack of accountability, blaming other people for one’s screw-ups, gaslighting others, and avoiding responsibility at all cost. The mindset of herd animals/serial committee members.

  1. Communist blame storming. What else are they going to do upon having realized the effects of their planning and actions? Take credit for their work? Hazardous to longevity in their position, so someone needs to be blamed…

  2. What a dumb ass!! Just goes to show what idiocy the politicans that have never had to run a company come up with. Any tax he adds will only ad to the cost of the groceries. What an idiot.

  3. Little Fidel learned from his father.

    Why not just go ahead and nationalize them Soviet style? It’s where Canada is headed. Fast.

    It’s a beautiful little idea right up until it runs into the realities of supply and demand economics.

    Artificially force prices down, here’s what happens.

    -less profit for the store, which operates on very narrow (about 1-1 1/2 %) profit margin.

    -people lose hours or jobs. The biggest expense of a business is staff.

    -fewer items are being reordered.

    -shelves become a bit emptier due to lack ability to restock. Product scarcity begins.

    -the people who transport these items will see fewer items to transport, making their costs go up and profits down.

    -with fewer products being ordered, the locations where they are produced start making fewer. Cue loss of hours and jobs there.

    -some items may begin with mass shrinkflation. Smaller volume for the allowed price. But only certain products will survive shrinkflation. Loss of hours and jobs eventually catches them, too.

    -less income for the product maker, they start cutting hours and jobs. Their other expenses are fixed, so it’s gotta be people.

    -the vendors serving the product maker see their profits go down. Cue job and hour cuts again.

    -the people who produce the raw materials necessary to create said products see their demand fall. More job losses and cut wages.

    Final results. Scarcity of products and loss of livelihoods. Possible crashed businesses.

    Very typically Soviet. Very, very typically Little Fidel.

    Good job Canada.

  4. For as bad as our political system is here, at least we don’t do the poop show most countries do.

    Yet.

  5. Trudeau is a fricken genious! Must have graduated from Penn State (Chinese funded) with a masters degree in Bidenomics when the master professor Biden was teaching there during his career as a very highly compensated economic policy professor.

  6. Justin carries a wand and uses fairy dust to get things done. A real genius of economics. If he didn’t have the last name “Trudeau,” he would be working in a women’s beauty salon, painting their nails. He’s a real creep.

  7. Like fighting fire with gasoline.

    Give stores more financial burden (taxes) and the trickle down economics will dictate that the consumers will be the one to pay the price.

    The battle between government and corporations is but theatre for the masses.

    Understand, both will screw you out of your money.

    • At least in a free market you have the hope of getting some value from a corporation in exchange for your money.

  8. Idiot scumbag communist. Typical: blame failing policies on “greedy” businesses, threaten them; deflect, genuflect, apply lips to boots attempting to hold on to power. Trudeau is a sick joke.
    BTW, if you maintain the same profit margin and prices go up, so will the total profit… – and nothing wrong with that, because the value of those “record profits” is probably less than the years we’re comparing. Trudeau is lying, and not disguising it well.

  9. Hate to somewhat agree with the communist, but many of the corporations are taking advantage of the situation by jacking prices on certain items by over 400% in some cases. With so many on food stamps it is not self regulating. Those who are paying with earned money have to spread out their shopping to many more stores to afford the items they desire. Groceries and gas control the economy and without the power of a large corporation competition is crushed. They can afford to drive a competitor out in order to control the market. The cheapest groceries in our state was when Safeway was competing with Carrs for control of the market. When they finally succeeded, groceries skyrocketed until Fred Myer stepped in. Only to be bought out by Kroger. It’s a cut throat business and an open field of competition is impossible against the corporate giants. There’s nothing in place to make them play fair. Nor is it the job of the government. My advice, eat more moose and grow a garden. Maybe some livestock. Or become a ward of the government, which is obviously the plan. Through their political contributions, these corporations have ensured that nobody will interfere with their greed. They have complete control over the price of groceries while cheating the farmers and paying their employees poverty wages.

      • Kroger. But the market mocked them royally when they tried to jack the price of pilot crackers to $9.99/box and Costco still had them @ 7.29… Guess Fred’s had their fill of ’em.
        Trig, I disagree with your premise that corporate greed drives inflation. Let the free market do its work – if a business gets out of line, the market will correct it or they will simply lose customers and profits. Kroger ruined Fred Meyer – I shop much more at other stores than I used to.

        • It’s not a free market anymore folks! It’s a monopoly. As a monopoly corporation you can charge what ever you want to charge. Look at electric, gas, phone, tech, education etcetera. Get it? We are running out of options.

  10. If you were to try and imagine a dumber thing to do it would be hard to imagine how raising taxes that get directly passed through to the consumer could ever possibly save the consumer money. These idiot leftists simply have a blind spot for their own failed policies that drive costs up, just like California and the cost of gas, the commies spend millions investigating oil companies while they’ve taxed oil and gas to absurd levels.

  11. Of course, if Tyranny Trudeau slaps higher taxes on these businesses, the prices will go up even more to cover the cost of the increased taxation (corporations don’t pay taxes, people do) and or scarcity of product or access to product will be driven up, ultimately hurting the very people he feigns to be championing, just like every other leftist scam clothed in “good intentions”…

  12. Any expectation made of the Elites & Administrative State to ,,, “look in the mirror and cast blame accordingly” is noble and righteous but, it won’t accomplish anything of significance and/or of meaningful value.
    These ‘tyrants’ must be dealt with swiftly and with complete conviction (aka: no mercy). Otherwise, people will continue to live as servants of the State.
    This not only applies to Canada but, also here in the US.
    Never Forget … “What you allow is what will continue!!!”

  13. Another Brandon; lol.

    Chicago Mayor Brandon Johnson Wants to Open City-Owned Grocery Stores

    Mayor Brandon Johnson (D) is looking into opening taxpayer-funded, city-owned grocery stores in areas in which businesses have pulled out due to rampant crime.

    ‘https://www.breitbart.com/politics/2023/09/14/chicago-mayor-brandon-johnson-wants-open-city-owned-grocery-stores/

  14. Like ANC, Canada has fully embraced the liberal vote, so life will be worse for everyone except the well off.
    It will even be worse for the “welfare” class that the Gov. insists on “helping”.
    Are elections even close there or are libs winning by landslides like here?
    Wonder if they have rampant shoplifting like we do? (that should even things out for the “poor”)

  15. Next step, nationalize them all so that the government has absolute control. Ask Cuba and any other communist country that has tried it how well it has worked.

  16. Looks like this drama major never crossed paths with an economics course Tax Costco and Walmart and watch them leave. Then with less competition, food prices will rise further.

  17. If I owned or was on the board of one of these corps I’d say go ahead, tax away. That will be reflected in the cost to consumers and all labels on the shelves will reflect that tax as percentage of price.

    And if he taxes enough we’ll just shut down or move out of Canada completely. Just call the bluff to clarify reality for the consumer so they can really understand and connect all the dots. Things like how Carbon Taxes effect prices. Or how high fuel prices show up in consumer prices.

    Sometimes I don’t think that’s occurring now at many levels all across government everywhere.

  18. It is already a pain to do business in Canada. Your products have to be labeled differently, in two languages (at least), so that costs money. Then there are the VAT and other taxes that affect pricing, and cut down on profit. At some point, Costco and Walmart and other corporations will just pull out, like Kimberly Clark did already. This tin pot dictator needs a lesson in economics, or at least common sense, but that’s not very likely.

  19. Don’t make the mistake of assuming Little Fidel is brain dead on this. It has a certain political sense to it.

    Conservatives are leading in almost every poll right now. National Post reported even the 18-26 age group.
    If forced to call an election now, his party loses. If he waits until compelled, if nothing changes, he loses and the left is swept out of power.

    By acting all macho and demanding grocery stores lower prices or else, it can help him shore up his failing base.

    Few things are more cunning than a political figure in trouble.

    • Fidelito, “acting all macho”?
      That would sure be one Hell of an act!

      First, though, they’d have to pump all the WEF soy out of his veins. And I don’t think that there’d be much left after that.

  20. And Canada moves ever closer to a command economy. It’s handy to call them elites but, really, these people like Trudeau and those running him are just the lucky few who ended up in charge somehow. There’s nothing special about them. Obviously they don’t possess superior intellect…Trudeau is proof of that. What they all have, however, is an inflated sense of self importance that fools them into thinking that their small group can manage society better than a free market. That’s what a centrally controlled command economy is all about. Bureaucrats determine what gets produced and how much it costs rather than the aggregated demand of millions of free individuals. They always get it wrong because the system is just too big and complex to be managed that way. It takes the Invisible Hand of the Market (the aggregated but uncoordinated demands of consumers driving what gets produced and thereby driving how natural resources get allocated). No central command economy has EVER gotten that right but that doesn’t stop fools like Trudeau from trying. Pity the Canadians now but see our future in what they’re experiencing because it’s coming sooner than you think.

  21. This guy sounds like so many communist despots before him. None of this surprises me as he has demonstrated a consistent pattern since he became Prime Minister.

  22. “Those profits should not be made on the backs of people who are struggling to feed their families”- he said in a cuck voice with blackface.

  23. So, if increasing taxes on the grocery stores will lower costs to the consumer, why isn’t it done across the board?
    Will a 10% increase in taxes on the store result in a reduction of prices by 10%? Is there a formula here?
    Perhaps taxing the stores at 100% is the right way to go. Won’t food be no cost to the consumer?
    .
    How do simpletons like Trudeau get elected and re-elected? Don’t answer, I already know.

  24. Higher food prices are just one of the many ways the so called, Carbon Tax, acts as a huge drag on a country’s economy! Trudeau is a Globalist tool.

    • Correct. But in their Parliamentary system, that’s often sufficient. He teams up with an even more liberal party.

      Coalitions are every bit as destructive as uniparties.

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