Co-op starts sun-cream price war

Supermarkets could be on the brink of a sun lotion price war after the Co-op announced it was almost halving its prices of the leading brands to help reduce the incidence of skin cancer.

The move follows research by the Co-op, which found that three people in four still do not realise sunshine can cause skin cancer, and one in three are unaware that sun lotions can reduce that risk.

Cost is also thought to deter people from using sun-creams, some of which sell for twice the price of champagne when measured by volume.

The Co-op, Britain's biggest retailer, will sell some leading brands at cost price throughout the summer. Typically, a 200ml bottle of Ambre Solaire's Factor 15 High Protection Milk will be reduced from the recommended retail price of pounds 9.29 to pounds 5.43, and a similar-sized bottle of factor 25 Piz Buin Lotion will come down from pounds 11.49 to pounds 5.97.

A Co-op spokesman, Ged Carter, said Britons were still failing to get the message that sunbathing was dangerous and should only be done with the protection of a good sun-cream.

The survey of 2,001 adults commissioned by the Co-op found that Britons each waste an average of one day on holiday each year because of sunburn.

"It's unfortunate that the burning ambition most Britons display on holiday costs them both pain and money in wasted holiday time," said Mr Carter.

"Worse still is ignorance about the fact that sun rays on skin cancer can cause health problems in the long term."

The move has prompted at least two rival supermarket chains, which sell the lotions at or around the recommended retail price, to warn they could consider cutting their own prices.

Tesco's corporate affairs manager Martin Venning said: "Clearly we will monitor the situation and may make a decision in the future."

He added that Tesco marketed its own brand of lotions called Sun Essentials, which were substantially cheaper than designer brands, costing pounds 4.99 for 200ml bottles.

A Boots spokesman warned: "We would obviously consider the marketplace when setting retail prices."

However, Asda stressed it would not be cutting its prices, pointing out that it already offered its own brand Sun System lotions at pounds 4.99 for a 200ml bottle.

Asda spokeswoman Charlie Hobson said: "Our customers already have a choice. They can buy Ambre Solaire or they can buy our own brand which has all the same features and is cheaper."

Start your day with The Independent, sign up for daily news emails
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

iJobs Job Widget
iJobs General

Recruitment Genius: Senior Digital Marketing Consultant

£28000 - £45000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A Senior Digital Marketing Cons...

Recruitment Genius: Assistant Stores Keeper

£16640 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: An Assistant Stores Keeper is r...

Recruitment Genius: Claims Administrator

£16000 - £18500 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This is an excellent opportunit...

Recruitment Genius: Software Developer - C# / ASP.NET / SQL

£17000 - £30000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: Developer required to join a bu...

Day In a Page

'It was first time I had ever tasted chocolate. I kept a piece, and when Amsterdam was liberated, I gave it to the first Allied soldier I saw'

Bread from heaven

Dutch survivors thank RAF for World War II drop that saved millions
Britain will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power - Labour

How 'the Axe' helped Labour

UK will be 'run for the wealthy and powerful' if Tories retain power
Rare and exclusive video shows the horrific price paid by activists for challenging the rule of jihadist extremists in Syria

The price to be paid for challenging the rule of extremists

A revolution now 'consuming its own children'
Welcome to the world of Megagames

Welcome to the world of Megagames

300 players take part in Watch the Skies! board game in London
'Nymphomaniac' actress reveals what it was really like to star in one of the most explicit films ever

Charlotte Gainsbourg on 'Nymphomaniac'

Starring in one of the most explicit films ever
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers

Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi

The Emirates' out-of-sight migrant workers helping to build the dream projects of its rulers
Vince Cable interview: Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'

Vince Cable exclusive interview

Charging fees for employment tribunals was 'a very bad move'
Iwan Rheon interview: Game of Thrones star returns to his Welsh roots to record debut album

Iwan Rheon is returning to his Welsh roots

Rheon is best known for his role as the Bastard of Bolton. It's gruelling playing a sadistic torturer, he tells Craig McLean, but it hasn't stopped him recording an album of Welsh psychedelia
Russell Brand's interview with Ed Miliband has got everyone talking about The Trews

Everyone is talking about The Trews

Russell Brand's 'true news' videos attract millions of viewers. But today's 'Milibrand' interview introduced his resolutely amateurish style to a whole new crowd
Morne Hardenberg interview: Cameraman for BBC's upcoming show Shark on filming the ocean's most dangerous predator

It's time for my close-up

Meet the man who films great whites for a living
Increasing numbers of homeless people in America keep their mobile phones on the streets

Homeless people keep mobile phones

A homeless person with a smartphone is a common sight in the US. And that's creating a network where the 'hobo' community can share information - and fight stigma - like never before
'Queer saint' Peter Watson left his mark on British culture by bankrolling artworld giants

'Queer saint' who bankrolled artworld giants

British culture owes a huge debt to Peter Watson, says Michael Prodger
Pushkin Prizes: Unusual exchange programme aims to bring countries together through culture

Pushkin Prizes brings countries together

Ten Scottish schoolchildren and their Russian peers attended a creative writing workshop in the Highlands this week
14 best kids' hoodies

14 best kids' hoodies

Don't get caught out by that wind on the beach. Zip them up in a lightweight top to see them through summer to autumn
Robert Fisk in Abu Dhabi: The acceptable face of the Emirates

The acceptable face of the Emirates

Has Abu Dhabi found a way to blend petrodollars with principles, asks Robert Fisk