On the 29th of December 2022, the Daily Mail published an article reporting that the CCPC had found Farm Depot guilty of engaging in anti-competitive business practices in their adjudication of cases meeting on the 5th of December.
The CCPC claimed that Farm Depot was guilty of the restrictive business practice of tying the purchase of day old chicks with buying chicken feed.
In response to the above article and the findings of the CCPC, Farm Depot wishes to place the following statement on file.
“The finding of the CCPC has very clearly misunderstood the nature and the purpose of the Farm Depot poultry bundle. The poultry bundle encourages farmers to make better economical and farming practice decisions by buying the correct amount of feed for the right number of day old chicks they purchase. Far from being anti-competitive, it actually saved the customers money and risk.
Due to the fluctuating nature of the supply and demand of day old chicks, at various times in the market history it may have appeared that the purchase of day old chicks was limited to our poultry bundles which we prioritize due to the popular demand of these bundles from our customer base. However, at no stage have we ever prohibited the purchase of day old chicks without feed when sufficient supply has been available to us to meet the demands of our customers who prefer bundles and those who choose to purchase chicks or feed in an unbundled purchase.
It is clear that this subtle but important point has been missed by the CCPC and the purpose of the poultry bundle has been mis-represented in their findings. It is on this basis that we will be appealing and challenging the CCPC’s findings.
We remain committed to giving Zambian farmers the best products, knowledge and service in the form of bundled or stand alone purchases. If any customer experiences otherwise from a Farm Depot store or employee (which being forced to purchase something you don’t want or need would definitely be), they are to report this immediately to head office.”