OFT releases fresh evidence against supermarkets

Further evidence gathered during an investigation into price-fixing between supermarkets and dairy companies has been sent to alleged culprits, the Office of Fair Trading revealed today (23 July).

Dairy products

The watchdog has taken the step as Tesco and Morrisons are continuing to contest its provisional verdict, delivered in 2007, that supermarkets and dairy suppliers colluded to increase prices of some products in 2002 and 2003.

The two supermarkets are continuing to protest their innocence despite all other parties “admitting their involvement in certain of the alleged anti-competitive practices” says the OFT.

Other supermarkets investigated included Asda, Sainsbury’s and Safeway prior to its acquisition by Morrisons.

Tesco and Morrisons have now been invited to respond to the extra evidence. Tesco says it will “look carefully” at the new evidence and “will continue to defend our position strongly”.

Morrisons also says it will examine the OFT’s submission but its “firm belief remains that there are no reasonable grounds for the OFT’s allegations against us”.

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