Did Coles kick out a small supplier to launch their own new product?

Coles has been finding ways to get people into their stores more frequently. So when ready-made meals became more popular with

Coles has been finding ways to get people into their stores more frequently. So when ready-made meals became more popular with the busy crowd, they launched the “Food on the Go” fridges.

Boutique retail food brand, Brubecks was one of the small companies which supplied ready-made food to Coles.

Chef Jamie Whitlock developed a restaurant-quality range of retail foods which he began showcasing around Brisbane through Coles since 2014 and it became a hit.

Just last month, Brubecks shocked customers by announcing that they will no longer be supplying to Coles. Customers who had been dropping in to buy the food to suit their busy schedule were disappointed. One customer said, “I got so used to just getting Brubecks and when they stopped coming to Coles, I ended up just buying Coles instant salads.” Brubecks have started supplying their ready-made meals to IGA.

Latest, Coles have revealed their own ready-made meal range. In fact, Coles has doubled the size of its Coles Brand ready-made meals range and reduced prices by as much as 28 per cent to squash Woolworths’ renewed push into the $600 million chilled meals category.

Ready-made meals have become the latest weapon in the battle for market share between Coles and Woolworths.

Is that why they stopped stocking meals from the independent supplier?

Coles general manager meal solutions Charlotte Rhodes said to SMH, “The takeaway market in Australia is very strong but quite expensive if you want to feed a family of four or five ,” Ms Rhodes, a former executive at UK retailer Sainsbury said. “We have looked at all the prices to bring them down as low as we can.”

“People here genuinely love to spend time cooking,” she said. “But customers are telling us their lives are more hectic.”

The Australian chilled meals market is estimated to be worth $600 million a year but is starting to take off as more women enter the workforce and as the quality of products improves.

Coles’ relationship with small suppliers have been a controversial one.

Last year, Coles refunded more than $12 million to small suppliers, on top of paying a $10 million court-ordered penalty for illegally squeezing them for funds.

Hopefully, independent business and small suppliers don’t suffer in the quest of securing million dollar markets.



Would you buy Coles’ ready-made food?

  1. Michael Leitch  

    That’s Westfarmers they only support their name

  2. I am sure Woolworths did a similar thing with an external provider (cant remember the name) and replaced with their own brand of meals for the same price – if not more. Haven’t tried them on principle!

    • David Goodluck  

      The other brand was Emily’s Kitchen and they were quite appetising.

  3. Robyn Townsend  

    Nope! I will NOT buy anything labelled Coles, Macro, Homebrand or any other generic supermarket brand. I only ever buy Betta milk (Tasmania) and I check every label before it goes into my trolley.
    The latest 20c a litre that Coles are “adding” to their cheap milk to support dairy farmers is hypocritical and disingenuous. We should all be paying a fair price to the people who produce our food and the big supermarkets shouldn’t be squeezing them dry to boost corporate profits. And if they can’t see through their fuzzy wuzzy warm feeling adverts to convince us that they are providing healthy economical produce from all of those happy smiling farmers, please someone, tell them they are dreamin’ !!

  4. marcia  

    bought a sandwich for lunch on the run…awful stale and realised its not fresh daily…not surprised they have been dropped

  5. Keith Schadel  

    No, this is just another warm and fuzzy Coles hypocritical marketing push with inferior products to boost their bottom line, they care nothing for consumer or manufacturers. Food tastes live cardboard with flavouring, these ex Sainsbury executives should go back to England, maybe the Poor English have been brainwashed into believing that Sainsbury care for them,truth is no,

  6. Peter Jenkinson  

    I used to like The Take away Curry Packs from Coles, but there own Coles Brand is so Horrible, I shall not be buying them ever again .

  7. Try their coffee brands. Only the most expensive on shelves. I think they have a deal with Nescafé.

  8. David Gregory  

    Along with their appalling treatment of our dairy farmers, this once again illustrates that Coles have no interest in the welfare of their suppliers, just in making huge margins from inferior Own Brand products.

  9. Joyce  

    I buy through Aussie Farmers Direct. Never had any problems. Great to deal with and they home deliver. I use Aldis and IGA for things I cant get through Aussie Farmers.

  10. There’s clearly a bundle to know about it. I presume you made certain nice points in features also.

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