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Tesco cheese price fixing penalty reduced under settlement

27-Feb-2013

Britain’s biggest retailer, Tesco, will pay a reduced £6.5m penalty to the UK Office of Fair Trading (OFT) for its involvement in the widespread fixing the cheese retail prices.

Tesco initially faced a fine of £10.4m under a 2011 OFT ruling that it had participated in fixing the retail price of cheese in 2002 and 2003. Tesco appealed the decision at the Competition Appeal Tribunal (CAT).

According to a statement issued by the OFT, the CAT upheld its initial findings that Tesco broke competition law by co-ordinating increases in the price consumers paid for cheese in 2002.

However, it dismissed all other OFT findings against Tesco.

“The OFT today announced that Tesco’ appeal in relation to the OFT’s 2011 Dairy Retail Price Initiatives decision has been brought to an end by Order to the Competition Appeal Tribunal as agreed between the parties.”

A statement posted on the Tesco website added: “Tesco is please that it has today settled the dairy competition appeal with the OFT. Tesco will pay a reduced penalty of £6.5m in respect of three infringements of competition law that took place in 2002.”