Micheal Clements, NAFB News Service

 

Tyson Foods this week agreed to $221.5 million to settle claims related to price-fixing lawsuits. The settlements are with three consumer and commercial purchasing groups who bought chickens directly from Tyson and require a federal judge’s approval. Tyson did not admit liability in agreeing to settle and said the payments will be reflected in its first-quarter financial statements, according to Reuters. The company still faces price-fixing claims from large corporations, including Chick-fil-A, Walmart and Sysco. Earlier this month, Pilgrim’s Pride agreed to a $75 million settlement in the litigation. Sanderson Farms and Perdue Farms are also included in the litigation. The lawsuit claims chicken producers have conspired since 2008 to inflate prices through tactics such as restricting production and sharing nonpublic data about supply and demand. The U.S. Department of Justice in April of 2019 subpoenaed major chicken firms over the issue. The investigation followed a private antitrust suit brought in 2016 by chicken buyers seeking damages from major producers who allegedly conspired to raise prices.