Thursday, 21 May 2009

How can it be?

I just don't get it. There is no plausible, possible explanation. It beggars belief. I cannae understand it at aw'.

I must, in advance, ask for your indulgence on the nerdy nature of this post, but I really have to put this out to the floor, as it were, and see if anyone, somewhere, can help me figure it out.

As you may remember, our trip to Scotland at Christmas coincided quite fortuitously with a record low in the GBP/EUR exchange rate, so we took full advantage of being rich and spent our euro-pounds in a mad supermarket sweep at Sainsbury's. We bought paracetamol for 23p, parsnips for 50p, and Persil Small & Mighty (known as Skip in France) for about £7. And some other stuff but I can't be expected to remember it all can I? I was truly astonished at how much cheaper some "global" brand goods were in the UK. Even taking the exchange rate into account, French euro prices were looking like an utter piss-take on us put-upon consumers. Even the dog's Pedigree biscuits were cheaper!

So anyway, our bumper pack of Persil has finally run out (why is it all the bottles of laundry detergent all run out at once - bog-standard, wool-care and colour-care all empty!). So picked up some at the supermarché today. And it cost the princely sum of €7.44! I'm livid. 7 quid for 750ml. And how much is a 1.5l bottle from Asda?! FOUR pounds, my friend.

So I'm hoping someone can help me to get my (admittedly sometimes quite blonde) head around this seemingly inexplicable and rather enormous difference in price. Is there some sort of special extra VAT on laundry detergent in France that I'm unaware of? Does it cost very very very much money to print the packaging in French? Or are consumers in France just being utterly and completely ripped off?