Easter Trading Scrutiny Intensifies

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Easter Trading Scrutiny Intensifies

Act Party MP Cameron Luxton has continued the debate on Easter trading limitations, saying New Zealanders are frustrated over the weekend’s restrictions on trading and have his full support.

“Kiwis looking to grab groceries and other essentials for the long weekend, or just take the time for some shopping, will be left disappointed on Friday and Sunday due to outdated Easter trading rules. 

“Local retailers who’d love to open have pointed out their big online competitors remain unaffected by the regime. These rules aren’t fair for business or consumers.

“Then there are the absurd rules for pubs and bars. Tens of thousands of Chiefs and Crusaders fans will want to get together at the pub to watch Friday’s Super Rugby face-off. 

“But they’ll be forced to buy a meal with any alcoholic drink. Kiwis don’t enjoy being condescended to, and hospo staff don’t enjoy enforcing the nanny state rules.

“My member’s bill, currently in Parliament’s ballot, will remove Easter trading restrictions – in short, if you want to open, you’ll have the freedom to do so. However, it retains the existing employee protections that apply on Easter Sunday and extends these protections to Good Friday.

“The 2016 decision to give local councils the option of making their own rules added even more confusion to a complex regime. It’s time to scrap the dopey regulation and let Kiwis make their own decisions.”

Consumer Focuses on Easter

Consumer NZ has taken a different approach to cracking down on egg-time by looking at how much more we pay for chocolate when it’s in a hollow egg compared to a bunny shape.

“The fact we pay more for a perfectly packaged easter treat won’t come as a surprise to anyone, but the price premium is no yolk. It may be more than you think,” said Ruairi O’Shea, Consumer NZ investigative writer.

As one example, Dairy Milk is 80 percent more expensive in egg form over a block. According to Consumer, if you’re buying multiple Easter eggs, it’s probably cheaper to make your own.

The seasonal nature and process and packaging complexities are behind the higher prices for most of the Easter goodies.

Plus, if you’re spending big bucks on Easter box sets, you’re shelling out for the additional packaging too.

A Cadbury Creme Egg box set containing a traditional Easter egg and six mini Creme Eggs—a total of 170g of chocolate—costs $14, which is $8.24 per 100g.

“We calculated you could save money if you bought a 100g Dairy Milk egg and a pack of mini Creme Eggs. That would set you back $12.50, for a choccie treat of 210g, which works out at $5.95 per 100g.”

The Lindt bunny is a pricey Easter treat at $8.90 per 100g. But in a battle of the Easter bunnies, Nestle’s super-cute Milkybar version has the dubious pleasure of being the most expensive Easter treat Consumer looked at.

“At $8 per bunny, which works out at $9.09 per 100g, the Nestle bunny is cute at an eggs-traordinary price.”

In comparison, a classic 170g of Nestle Milkybar costs $4.39. The bunny version of the sweet treat costs a whopping 252 per cent more per 100g.

If you’re after the creamy Lindt hit and are not bothered about having a bunny with a gold bell, then opt for a 100g bar of Lindt chocolate instead,” O’Shea said. “At $4.80, it’s almost half the price.”

“The cheapest eggs we hunted down were the Waikato Valley eggs at The Warehouse, which cost $3.50 per 100g. Woolworths’ own-brand Easter egg was $4.50 for 100g, cheaper than other options we looked at, but still significantly dearer than a bar of its own-brand Belgian Milk Chocolate, which works out at a tasty $1.53 per 100g.”