Fresh/ Table, New Zealand, Australia, Promotion/Marketing, Trade/Markets/Prices

Australian potato wholesaler fined for unfair contracts

Aussie potato wholesaler Mitolo Group has been fined A$240,000 (US$162,000) for infringements relating to its contracts with potato growers.

In proceedings brought by the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC), the Australian Federal Court declared that certain terms of contracts were unfair and therefore void.

The contracts which were declared to be unfair included terms that allowed Mitolo to unilaterally determine or vary the price Mitolo paid farmers for potatoes, unilaterally vary other contractual terms, declare potatoes as ‘wastage’ without a mechanism for proper review, and prevent farmers from selling potatoes to alternative purchasers.

The new Mitolo contract terms are intended to provide potato growers with greater transparency and certainty over pricing and allow them to sell potatoes to other parties if they are not satisfied with the price received from Mitolo.

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