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The Co-op - good with food, but what about energy?

10th May 2011 Print, the independent price comparison and switching service, welcomes news that the Co-op is moving into energy.

Tom Lyon, energy expert at, says: "This is great news for consumers especially coming so soon after Ofgem's review. The Co-op is an established brand with an ethical heritage, so when a brand likes this says it is setting out to shake up the energy industry everyone should be sitting up. We are delighted that it is starting out with the intention of offering consumers a fair and honest deal - the more of us within the industry calling for this the greater the chance of positive change happening.

"In keeping with the Co-op's ethics, energy will be sourced from low carbon and renewable sources - this is to be expected and should hopefully offer those consumers who are interested in green energy with another player to choose from. In terms of shaking up the market and bringing greener energy sources to a broader audience this is a good move. However, renewable energy comes at a price so it is important for households to compare what the Co-op is offering with other green energy plans. They also need to be aware that the Co-op isn't at this stage promising 100% green and renewable energy, unlike smaller green player Good Energy.

"The Co-op says that it will offer consistently competitive prices, but won't aim to be best or cheapest in class. This is clear from its prices, where its average household energy bill comes in at £1,023 a year compared with £965 for the average online energy plan and £931 for the cheapest online energy plan in the market. This suggests that the Co-op knows who its audience is and what they want - and it's unlikely to be those households struggling to pay bills and therefore looking for the best price."