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Carrefour and PepsiCo make peace after inflation spat


Inflation has been at the top of consumers’ minds for the better part of the last two years. But when one of Europe’s major grocers removes products over high prices, that’s when you know it’s really happening—and it’s hurting shoppers. 

But after pulling PepsiCo products like Doritos and Pepsi from its shelves due to their “unacceptable” price tags, French supermarket Carrefour has finally buried the hatchet.

Europe’s largest grocer has brought PepsiCo products back to its store racks in France, the Wall Street Journal reported Wednesday.

“It’s nice to see friends we haven’t seen for a long time,” Carrefour’s executive director Alexandre de Palmas said in a post on X on Wednesday, holding a bottle of Pepsi.  

The fight between the two behemoths has been building up for several months now. Last year, Carrefour slapped “shrinkflation” warnings on products by the likes of Nestle, Unilever and, of course, PepsiCo, to call their practices out. It was part of the effort by the store to hold prices as low as possible even though brands are hiking prices for their part. The trade-off is grocers face pressure on their margins, too.

At the turn of this year, the French grocery chain took PepsiCo products off its shelves in response to inflation at a time when consumers’ incomes were squeezed. The two argued over what led to their fallout—while Carrefour said it’s pushing back against shrinkflation, PepsiCo has argued it’s because contract negotiations have gone awry. It’s still unclear what transpired between the food and beverage brand and supermarket chain, but it was significant that PepsiCo products weren’t on Carrefour shelves.

A PepsiCo spokesperson told Fortune that the company was “pleased to have reached an agreement and are delighted that our products are returning to Carrefour’s shelves for people to enjoy once again.”

The tug-of-war between companies and grocers over price-related matters have led to such instances in the past. For instance, in U.K.’s Tesco stopped stocking Kraft Heinz’s baked beans, ketchup and tomato soup in 2022 over pricing quarrels. Manufacturers have tried to justify price increases in the face of inflation as a necessary evil to cope with production costs. However, retail chains argue the measure is hurting customers and their ability to buy basic food items. 

Across Europe, the crackdown on price hikes has picked up in recent times—the U.K.’s competition watchdog has warned supermarkets against profiting from price increases. Luckily for supermarkets, prices are cooling which means less time and resources spent contending with rising food and beverage prices. Governments are also taking different approaches to absorb some of the price difference.

Details of PepsiCo’s and Carrefour’s arrangement aren’t known yet. 

Representatives for Carrefour didn’t immediately respond to Fortune’s request for comment.

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