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Cost of living: Tesco to limit cooking oil purchases as Russian-Ukrainian war takes its toll | United Kingdom | News UK News

Teso’s decision is the latest among supermarkets to limit customers as the dispute chokes off the flow of sunflower oil to the UK. Morrisons and Waitrose have already limited purchases to two per person.

Waitrose said it was “monitoring the situation closely and working with our suppliers to ensure customers continue to have a choice of cooking oils”.

Sainsbury’s and Asda have yet to take any action.

Ukraine and Russia account for around 60% of the world’s sunflower oil production.

In UK stores, sunflower oil is one of the “big four” vegetable oils, ranked behind palm, soy and rapeseed oils.

The shortage of sunflower oil has also led to higher prices for palm, rapeseed and soybean oil.

Sunflower oil, pressed from sunflower seeds, is often used in foods as a frying oil and in cosmetic formulations as an emollient.

Earlier this month, Edible Oils, which packs oil for 75% of the UK retail market, warned it had just a few weeks supply left.

Other issues such as the coronavirus pandemic and climate change are also said to have impacted stocks and the price of sunflower oil.

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Tesco has introduced a purchase limit of three bottles per customer across its range of cooking oils, the Guardian reported.

The UK’s largest retailer says it has good cooking oil availability, but on its website a small number of vegetable oils are out of stock.

Besides being a household staple, sunflower oil is also found in hundreds of products, from ready meals to crisps, cookies to mayonnaise.

Tom Lock, founder of The British Snack Company, which makes hand-cooked crisps to sell in pubs, said that after potatoes, his other key ingredient was sunflower oil.

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Mr Lock told the publication: “Sunflower oil is the industry standard for snacks.

“It’s impossible to get sunflower oil in any quantity. You can’t get it.

“We got enough rapeseed to get through August, but we’re paying three times as much for it as for sunflower oil a year ago.”

Mr Lock said it was inevitable that price increases would be passed on to the customer.

He said: “We have already made a price increase for our customers this year.”

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This notice was published: 2022-04-22 23:04:00

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