European Commission Recent Actions in the Retail Sector

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Statement of Objections sent to 13 suspected participants in retail food packaging cartel

On September 28th 2012 the European Commission announced that it had issued a Statement of Objections to 13 companies active in the production and/or distribution of retail food packaging, for an alleged infringement of Article 101 TFEU.
The European Commission is of the preliminary view that the manufacturers or distributors of polystyrene (PS) foam trays and polypropylene (PP) rigid trays, which are widely used for packaging food in the retail sector, may have participated in a cartel covering the European Economic Area (EEA), for nearly eight years.

The companies are suspected of having colluded to the following anti-competitive practices:
• price fixing,
• market sharing,
• customer allocation,
• exchanges of commercially sensitive information,
• bid-rigging.

The names of the 13 suspected participants were not disclosed by the European Commission so as to preserve the presumption of innocence and the rights of defence.

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