The German food retailer Kaufland on Friday said that it was dropping Unilever products from its shelves to protest against price increases. Photo: (AP Photo/Richard Drew, file)

INTERNATiONAL - The German food retailer Kaufland on Friday said that it was dropping Unilever products from its shelves to protest against price increases.

Kaufland, which has operations 660 stores in Germany, said that it had tried to reach a solution since May with Unilever but its offers were rejected.

It affects products including Knorr, Lipton and Ben & Jerry’s.

Unilever, citing confidential customer relationships, declined to comment.

“Unilever, from Kaufland’s point of view, seeks to use its formidable market position to influence retailers and optimize its own returns,” Kaufland said.

“Due to its corporate responsibility, Kaufland was unable to accept Unilever’s demands and had to react,” the German retailer said.

The German retailer said that its decision would also impact its stores in the Czech Republic, Slovakia, Croatia, Poland, Romania and Bulgaria.

Kaufland is part of Germany’s Schwarz Gruppe, which is also the owner of discount retailer Lidl.

REUTERS