Union applauds bread cartel fine

Labour union Food and Allied Workers’ Union (Fawu) has welcomed a fine imposed on bread-maker Foodcorp for admitting a role in bread-price fixing, it said on Tuesday.

“Fawu welcomes the move by Foodcorp regarding its admission of guilt and payment of fine for their involvement in the morally repugnant price-fixing scandal,” it said.

The union further called on President Kgalema Motlanthe to sign the amended Competition Act into law. The amended version holds directors personally liable for transgressions.

The union’s comments follows news on Monday that Foodcorp agreed to pay a R45,4-million fine to the Competition Commission for its involvement in the bread cartel that rocked South Africa late in 2007.

“The Competition Commission has reached a settlement agreement with Foodcorp over the latter’s participation in the bread cartel and referred the matter to the Competition Tribunal for confirmation,” the commission said.

The hearing has been scheduled for Tuesday.

In terms of the consent agreement, Foodcorp admitted that Sunbake Bakeries (operated by Foodcorp) was engaged in fixing the price of bread sold to consumers, the commission said.

“Foodcorp has agreed to pay an administrative penalty of R45 406 359,82, representing 6,7% of Foodcorp’s turnover from all its baking operations for the 2006 financial year.”—I-Net Bridge, Sapa

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