The European Commission has reportedly fined eight manufacturers and two distributors of food packaging a total of €115.9 million, for participation in at least five cartels to fix prices and split up the market.
The companies in question are manufacturers Huhtamäki (Finland), Nespak and Vitembal (France), Silver Plastics (Germany), Coopbox, Magic Pack and Sirap-Gema (Italy), and Linpac (UK), as well as distributors Propack (UK) and Ovarpack (Portugal), according to reports in Portuguese dailies Diario Economico and Publico.
The companies reportedly fixed prices and divided up customers of polystyrene foam trays and polypropylene rigid trays, in violation of EU anti-competitive rules. These products are used for packaging foods sold in stores or supermarkets, for example cheese, fish, meat or bakery products.
According to the EC Commissioner responsible for competition policy, Margrethe Vestager, millions of consumers were potentially affected by these cartels. The investigation established that the ten companies fixed prices on auctions and tenders since the early 2000s and shared commercially sensitive information.
© 2015 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Branislav Pekic