Bill to Spur Competition in Food Advances

Supermarkets would be required to reserve 50 percent of display space to small manufacturers.

Ora Coren
Adi Dovrat-Meseritz
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A joint panel of lawmakers from the Knesset finance and economics committees was working late into the night on Tuesday on a series of measures aimed at putting more competition into retail food sales.

The committee, chaired by Avishai Braverman (Labor), approved a proposal to limit supermarket shelf space used to display products made by large food makers to no more than 50%. The rest would be reserved for smaller manufacturers, under the law, which was due to go to its second and third readings Tuesday night.

Another rule the committee approved would require supermarket chains to upload data on prices on an hourly basis to their websites in order to enable price-comparison sites to easily line up prices between various retailers. Another rule would bar food makers from paying for supermarket shelf space.

The small number of importers is one reason for the high food prices in Israel.Credit: Ilan Assayag