BASF to settle with Farmland

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Related tags: United states

Chemical giant BASF Corporation is to pay more than $17 million to
Farmland Industries, the bankrupt US farmer-owned co-operative, to
settle a vitamin price-fixing lawsuit, according to court papers.

Chemical giant BASF Corporation is to pay more than $17 million to Farmland Industries, the bankrupt US farmer-owned co-operative, to settle a vitamin price-fixing lawsuit, according to court papers.

According to the papers filed on Wednesday in a US bankruptcy court, Farmland asked for expedited court approval of the settlement.

Farmland purchased $123.5 million in vitamins for use in animal feed products from BASF and other companies, according to the court papers. Farmland estimated total damages at $42 million.

Farmland is among 154 plaintiffs that sued about three dozen vitamin makers and distributors for allegedly fixing vitamin prices.

The plaintiffs include major food companies General Nutrition Companies, Tyson Foods, Kraft Foods North America and Quaker Oats.

BASF said it would not comment on pending litigation. Farmland spokesperson Sherlyn Manson called the deal "a good settlement".

Last November, the European Union levied a fine of about $750 million against eight chemical and pharmaceutical companies for fixing vitamin prices. BASF, Europe's largest chemical company and a large vitamin maker, was fined about $260 million for its role.

Battered by weak fertilizer sales and debt, cash-strapped Farmland filed for bankruptcy protection on 31 May.

Related topics: Regulation

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