The staff of the Federal Trade Commission's Bureau of Competition has announced the agenda for the workshop on slotting allowances, which will be held in the FTC Headquarters Building in Washington, D.C., on May 31 and June 1, 2000.
"Slotting allowances" are the lump-sum, up-front payments that manufacturers of food items often pay in order to get new products on supermarket shelves. The goals of the workshop are to provide a forum for manufacturers, retailers, and other interested parties to exchange views on slotting allowances, to give FTC staff an opportunity to learn more about the nature of slotting allowances and to better assess whether they raise competitive concerns.
The workshop will begin at 2:00 pm on May 31. After an introductory presentation by FTC staff, the workshop will move into a series of roundtable discussions among manufacturers, retailers and business consultants who have had actual hands-on experience with grocery marketing practices. The panel on May 31 will cover the basics of slotting allowances and their role in the introduction of new products.
On June 1, beginning at 8:30 a.m., three additional panels of business representatives will address:
- The possible effects of slotting allowances on entry and growth;
- The possible effects of slotting allowances on bargaining relationships between retailers and manufacturers; and
- The use of category management.
The final segment of the workshop will be a panel made up of antitrust practitioners who will discuss public policy recommendations for the future.
Specific questions of interest were identified in the initial announcement of the workshop, published in the March 24 Federal Register and at www.ftc.gov under the entry for Formal Actions and the sub-entry for Commission Actions for March 16. Comments already received include a Petition for Guidelines on Slotting Allowances submitted by the Independent Bakers Association, the Tortilla Industry Association, and the National Association of Chewing Gum Manufacturers. Parties wishing to submit written statements for the public record may do so through June 23. Written statements should be submitted in both hard copy and electronic form. Six hard copies of each submission should be addressed to Donald S. Clark, Office of the Secretary, Federal Trade Commission, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580. Submissions should be captioned "Comments Regarding Slotting Allowances and Other Grocery Marketing Practices." Electronic submissions should be filed on a 3-1/2 inch computer disk with a label on the disk stating the name of the submitter and the name and version of the word processing program used to create the document.
For further information please contact: David Balto at (202) 326-2881 or William Cohen at (202) 326-2110.
Copies of the March 16 news release and the March 24 Federal Register Notice are available from the FTC's web site at http://www.ftc.gov and also from the FTC's Consumer Response Center, Room 130, 600 Pennsylvania Avenue, N.W., Washington, D.C. 20580; 877-FTC-HELP (877-382-4357); TDD for the hearing impaired 1-866-653-4261. To find out the latest news as it is announced, call the FTC NewsPhone recording at 202-326-2710.
(FTC Matter No. P001201)
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