New Tool: ProSource
Checkout our packaging and processing solutions finder, ProSource.

U.S. Egg Producers, Trade Groups Found Responsible for Price Fixing

A jury determined Cal-Maine Foods, Rose Acre Farms, United Egg Producers, and United States Egg Marketers engaged in a conspiracy to raise the cost of eggs from 2004 to 2008.

Eggs

Last week, a federal jury in Illinois found two major U.S. egg producers and two trade groups had conspired to increase the domestic prices of eggs and egg products during the 2000s. Kellogg, Kraft, General Mills, and Nestlé USA originally filed the lawsuit in 2011 against Cal-Maine Foods, Rose Acre Farms, United Egg Producers, and United States Egg Marketers.

In the lawsuit, the parties were accused of participating in a conspiracy to increase the prices of eggs and egg products around Thanksgiving and Easter during the 2000s through a variety of means intended to limit the domestic supply of eggs. These included exporting eggs and “early hen slaughters, cage space increases, and bans on cage backfilling, which involved replacing ill or dead laying hens with new ones.”


   New York Files Lawsuit Against PepsiCo Over Plastic Packaging


Although the timeframe of the conspiracy was an issue throughout the case, the jurors ultimately determined the egg companies are liable for damages that occurred between 2004 and 2008. (Jurors were instructed not to consider more recent egg pricing during their deliberations.) The same jurors will determine the amount of damages due in a trial scheduled to begin on Nov.29.

“We are incredibly pleased by the jury’s decision to hold egg producers Cal-Maine Foods and Rose Acre Farms accountable alongside United Egg Producers and United States Egg Marketers for conspiring to inflate the price of eggs,” Brandon Fox, an attorney representing the food manufacturers, said in a statement. “For the first time, the defendants have been held liable for their antitrust violations. We are now going to turn our attention to the damages phase.”


Discover Our Content Hub
Access Healthcare Packaging's free educational content library!
Read More
Discover Our Content Hub
Test Your Supply Chain Smarts
Take Healthcare Packaging's supply chain quiz to prove your knowledge!
Read More
Test Your Supply Chain Smarts