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Lawyers Find New Vehicle for Class Action Suits


A class action lawsuit has been filed alleging that 11 companies with collectively 140 plants representing 80 percent of U.S. meat and poultry production conspired to collude on wages.


The common factor among the companies is that they were subscribers to AgriStats™, an industry benchmark service that circulated detailed cost information.  The lawsuit claims that, “Defendants implemented, monitored an enforced a conspiracy to fix and depress compensation paid to class members through a series of overt acts, including secret compensation surveys, annual meetings, direct communications among executives, data exchange by AgriStats™ and in some cases, “ non-poach” agreements.

Given the settlements agreed to in lawsuits alleging collusion and price fixing, there is every prospect that defendant companies will enrich the legal profession and possibly the Class.