Seven biscuit manufacturers in Belgium raided

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The companies, including some big names, are facing charges of price-fixing.

16 May 2008

BELGIUM - Inspectors carried out raids on seven companies in Belgium in an investigation into price-fixing by biscuit manufacturers.

About 50 inspectors of the Belgian competition authority - whose task is to safeguard free competition - have raided seven companies which manufacture biscuits and chocolate.

The list includes well-known brands such as Kraft Foods, Lu Biscuits, Nestlé, Mars and Ferrero.

The biscuit manufacturers are suspected of making agreements to keep their prices artificially high. In other words, they face allegations of price-fixing. They also stand accused of having made agreements on where their goods are displayed in the supermarkets and shops, and which discounts would be offered at what time.

The Belgian competition authority is not commenting further on the results of their raids. A similar investigation into price-fixing by biscuit manufacturers in Germany has also been carried out.

Lu Biscuits: "We have nothing to hide"
The director of Lu Biscuits, Robert Van Breen, confirms that the inspectors visited their factory. "We have nothing to hide and we have not been involved with price-fixing," he asserts.

A few weeks ago, the Belgian competition authority discovered that prices were being fixed by flour manufacture

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