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'Price gouging and greed not enough?': Canadians call out Loblaws for slashing same-day discounts

Many shoppers are criticizing Loblaws' actions during a period of surging inflation and heightened grocery costs

Loblaws is cutting its same-day discounts from 50 per cent to 30 per cent in numerous stores across Canada. (The Canadian Press/Doug Ives)
Loblaws is cutting its same-day discounts from 50 per cent to 30 per cent in numerous stores across Canada. (The Canadian Press/Doug Ives)

Loblaws is facing scrutiny for adjusting its discount policies, resulting in higher prices for its most affordable food items starting this January.

The company intends to decrease the discount on same-day items nearing their best-before date from 50 per cent to 30 per cent in numerous stores, including other Loblaw retailers such as Valu-Mart, No Frills and Zehrs.

The news began circulating on X — previously known as Twitter — earlier this week, after user Food Prefessor wrote, "Hey @LoblawsON, Heard a rumour. Starting Jan. 14, there could be a shift in the discount percentages for food items nearing their expiration date at stores like Zehrs Supermarket (from 50 per cent down to 30 per cent)."

Following the news of the recent decision, many social media users began criticizing Loblaws' actions during a period of surging inflation and heightened grocery costs.

Canada's 2024 Food Price Report, released in December, estimated food prices will rise by 2.5 to 4.5 per cent over the next year. That report also indicated food costs will go up across most categories and that on average, a family of four may spend up to $16,297.20 on food. On the other hand, a two-adult household is expected to spend about $7,715.78.

After the news spread on social media, a Loblaws representative addressed Yahoo Canada's inquiry on the recent reports, confirming the rumours are true.

"We've always offered a range on these types of items from 30 to 50 per cent, and are now moving toward a more predictable and consistent offering, including more consistency with our competitors," the representative told Yahoo Canada.

"We continue to offer a range of discounts via in-store promotions and flyers, as well as deep discounts on food nearing expiration through the Flashfood app."

Although Loblaws did not provide an exact date for when the discount rates will be adjusted, reports claim it will begin on Jan. 14. However, some people on social media say it's already underway.