TESCO has moved to say it is sticking with the Saltire after it deleted a tweet that indicated it would replace the emblem with the Union flag.

The supermarket giant came under fire for its reponse to a question on social media asking: "Can you confirm that you are removing the Saltire from Scotland's produce and replacing it with a British flag."

In response Tesco caused a stir through its @TescoNews twitter feed when it said: "We are removing the Scottish Saltire and replacing it with the United Kingdom flag."

READ MORE: Scottish produce is being labelled with the Union Flag - and people are not happy

But the comment caused a social media storm and was deleted after it was posted "in error" and replaced with a response that said Tesco "regularly" uses the Saltire flag on Scottish products "wherever possible".

They added: "We make clear the farm, grower and country of origin on all packaging.

"To maintain supply to our customers we will sometimes stock British produce in our Scottish stores to avoid disappointing customers."


But some reacted angrily to the original statement, saying they would no longer shop at Tesco.

Rachel MacNeill told Tesco: "Scottish products must have a Saltire. We do not wish to support a store eradicating Scottish identity."

Another said: "Now that you are openly anti-Scottish you will never get another penny from me."


The stramash surfaced as an online campaign was launched rallying against the Union Flag replacing the saltire on Scottish produce.

Supermarket customer Ruth Watson started the #KeepScotlandTheBrand campaign after repeatedly seeing Scottish products packaged under a Union flag.

Ruth's social media page, Aye, Have a Voice, has grown a large following from other angered Scots who have been sharing their pictures showing the labelling.

Last year, it emerged Tesco removed the Saltire from packaging on its Scottish-grown fruit following complaints from English customers.

The supermarket giant featured a prominent St Andrew's cross on a range of produce from Scotland sold throughout the UK.

However, it replaced that flag with the Union flag, including in Scotland, after revealing that English customers complained that similar products grown in England did not carry St George's cross on packaging.


Tesco then gave the reasoning in a series of five tweets, although it later said these do not accurately reflect its position.

In an updated statement, the grocer later said: "To provide consistency for customers, we mark all of our homegrown fresh berries with a Union flag.

"The country of origin is also clearly displayed on pack."

A Herald scout around one Glasgow store showed the Union Flag predominated but the Saltire had not been banished.  There were no longer any flags on strawberries.



A Tesco spokesman said: “We are extremely proud to be Scottish agricultures biggest customer, as any customer visiting our stores or buying our products in Scotland will see. There has been no recent change to how we use the Saltire to celebrate Scottish food and drink.”

Tesco indicated that the mistake appeared to relate to the belief the customer was talking about changes made to strawberries a year ago.