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Ford says province coming after price gougers during coronavirus crisis

Last Updated Mar 26, 2020 at 4:44 pm EDT

Premier Doug Ford speaks to reporters outside his office at Queen's Park on January 17, 2020. Image courtesy Josef Fazio.

 

Premier Doug Ford has a message for individuals and businesses who are price gouging the public: We’re coming after you hard.

Ford said he was disgusted to hear that a container of disinfectant wipes were being sold at an upscale Toronto grocery store for almost $30 – nearly three to four times what the same item usually costs.

“When it comes to price gouging, I have zero tolerance for (it). I’m calling them out – Pusateri’s, I hear that they are selling wipes for $30 a tin? That’s disgusting,” said an absolutely flustered Ford. ” I can’t even describe the words I’m about to say.”

Ford’s comments were in relation to a tweet that showed a sign allegedly posted in Pusateri’s claiming to sell Lysol Wipes for $29.99 with a limit of one per family.

Ford says the matter of price gouging is being brought before cabinet to ensure that this type of behaviour is illegal. He also made it clear that violators will be dealt with swiftly.

“A message to anyone that price gouges, we’re coming after you. We’re going to come after you hard. …They’re done, they’re going to be gone.”

“Nothing gets me more furious than someone taking advantage and price gouging the public that are in desperate need of these items.”

Ford went on to praise the majority of companies who are taking care of their employees and those that are donating their time and items during this crisis.

Following Ford’s comments, Pusateri’s issued a statement apologizing and offering a full refund to anyone who purchased the product in their stores.

“While no excuse, our stores are facing immense pressure on all levels of the operation. As a result of this mounting pressure, critical elements were overlooked including the incorrect pricing of this product. This was our mistake, our error, our oversight and we apologize to everyone impacted,” said president and CEO Frank Luchetta in a statement. “This should have never happened, and it will never happen again.”

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