Village grocery shop hits back in row over price of food bags

Sally Brown of Sally B's village shop
Sally Brown of Sally B's village shop

A village grocery shop is standing up for its customers after the council insisted they charge more for a popular product.

Husband and wife Keith and Sally Brown, who own convenience store Sally B’s on Main Street, Great Longstone, Bakewell, claim Derbyshire Dales District Council has tried to make them charge £2.50 a roll for bio-degradable food bags, when in fact they only buy them from the council for £1.50 a roll.

Mr Brown, 67, said he instead decided to sell the bags for £1.90, but on ordering a second supply, was told by the council that they insist he sells them at £2.50 otherwise he risks not being able to buy them from them.

The district council says it is currently talking to Sally B’s to find a solution.

“It is a point of principle,” Mr Brown said.

“It is just I honestly believe that the general public are not to be made a fool off and should not be ripped off.”

Mr Brown says that as the council are selling the food bags to the public for £2.50 a roll, and then at a discounted price of £1.50 to retailers, then he believes the council must be buying them at £1 a roll.

He added: “To me, it is just too much of a profit margin.”

A spokesperson for the district council said: “The first thing to say is that we provide every one of the 34,000 households in the Derbyshire Dales with a free year’s supply of bio-degradable food bags, which means very few of our residents actually need to top up their free supply.

“While there’s no obligation on the part of residents to use a bag when recycling food waste for our weekly recycling collections, for those people who find they need additional bags we sell them at £2.50 for a roll of 52 from District Council reception desks including our leisure centres.

“To help residents who live some distance from council offices we’ve identified five village outlets to make the extra bags more accessible. Four of the five village outlets have no problem whatsoever with the £2.50 price tag and are happy to keep the mark-up for themselves in recognition of their assistance as a community outlet. We are currently talking to the fifth operator in the hope of finding a solution. We review our fees and charges annually and always welcome feedback.”