Woolworths responds to Pauline Hanson’s accusations over stocking of Anzac Day commemorative tins

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Woolworths has responded to furious criticism levelled by One Nation senator Pauline Hanson over the stocking of RSL Australia’s limited-edition Anzac biscuit tins.

The tins feature designs commemorating different wars and conflicts and are collectable items, with a portion of the profits supporting the RSL to aid veterans and their families.

Senator Hanson compared the situation to the Australia Day debacle where the supermarket came under fire for not selling items used to celebrate the controversial date.

“I haven’t shopped at Woolworths ever since they announced they wouldn’t be supporting Australia Day,” Senator Hanson wrote online.

“Now that I have learned Woolworths has also refused to stock the RSL’s special Anzac biscuit tins, It reinforces my original decision.

“If Woolworths isn’t interested in celebrating Australia and doing everything it can to support our veterans through organisations like the RSL, then I’m proud to continue to boycott Woolworths and I hope others will join me in taking their business elsewhere.”

However, Woolworths has told news.com.au that the supermarket giant was selling multiple items for Anzac appeals and has raised almost $13 million for the cause over the past decade.

The supermarket giant confirmed that while it will not be stocking the limited-edition tins this year, they will be selling Anzac Appeal badges and supporting veterans and the RSL.

“We are the only supermarket to be selling the badges,” Woolworths said in a statement.

“We sell Bakers Finest Anzac biscuits in our stores all year round, this product is endorsed by the RSL and generates revenue for the RSL to support veterans and their families.

“We’ve been proud partners of the RSL for the past 10 years, supporting the ANZAC Appeal in April and the Poppy Appeal in November.

Almost $13 million has been raised at Woolworths in the past 10 years for those appeals.”

A spokesperson from RSL Victoria said they continue to have a “valued partnership” with the supermarket.

“The RSL and Woolworths have an ongoing and valued partnership, providing ongoing support to veterans and their families across Australia.

“Over the last ten years, Woolworths has raised more than $13 million during both our ANZAC and Poppy Appeals by making badges available for purchase in stores, providing direct and crucial support to the veteran community nationwide.

“This support continues in 2024, with Woolworths once again stocking ANZAC and Poppy Appeal badges for purchase.

But the issue over the absence of the specific commemorative tins has still attracted criticism.

World War II veteran Jack Bartlett said he was “horrified” upon hearing the news.

“I collect those tins and value them greatly because of my association. I’m very, very sorry to hear that Woolworths won’t do it (sell them),” Mr Bartlett told 2GB’s Ben Fordham.

“It’s such a small thing for such a big shopping conglomerate to do. I don’t think it’s very, very much to ask them to continue what they’ve done for some time.

In January 1942 I, along with thousands of young men, took up arms to defend this country with one thought in mind: to live our way of life.

“We fought and won and I think that it is only common courtesy to ask the leaders of our industry to support us in our hour of need.”

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