Major supermarkets Tesco, Morrisons and Sainsbury's have decided not to stock The National, a new daily newspaper in Scotland launched on Monday, the first of its kind to support Scottish independence.
Tesco and Morrisons gave differing reasons for choosing not to sell the paper while Sainsbury's claimed its tills were not updated in time but will stock the paper tomorrow.
Supermarket giant Morrisons claimed that it was “unable to stock The National due to a lack of space in store”, and said it would have to remove local newspapers in order to do so. A spokesperson said Morrisons would “monitor how the newspaper performs and review in due course”.
Tesco said it would “consider arrangements for stocking the newspaper if the print edition is a success”, while a Sainsbury’s spokesperson said: “The National was not on our system in time for launch today, but it will be available from tomorrow.”
The paper’s editor Richard Walker, said: “Clearly it’s disappointing that some retailers have chosen not to sell the National. We are looking into the reasons they’ve given to see if we can make it easier for them to sell it. We hope that the demand that we get from our customers will encourage them to change minds.”
Walker, who also edits the Sunday Herald, said that the first edition of the paper received an “amazing response” and the print run for Tuesday will increase to 100,000.
“We are really, really grateful to everyone who bought the paper and hope they will continue to buy it.” said Walker. “We are very pleased with the first copy but we’re going to get better.”
The National, published by Newsquest, is on sale for a pilot period of five days and costs 50p.
The paper was launched following the success of the Sunday Herald which more than doubled its circulation after backing a Yes vote in the Scottish independence referendum.
Its year on year circulation for the week of the referendum increased by 111 per cent.