In August 2002 the Federal Court ruled that Woolworths had published misleading advertising relating to the sale of beef in Northern NSW and Queensland. In 2003 the same court issued orders against Woolworths for breaching the price fixing provisions of the Trade Practices Act in Nhulunbuy, NT, over the sale of alcohol. In February last year, Safeways, a Woolies subsidiary, was found guilty of fixing the price of bread in Victoria and NSW and fined $9m. Then, in December, in what the media termed “bullying” of small liquor outlets, it was fined $7m for anti-competitive behaviour.

Woolies may be one of the worst offenders but it’s not alone. Here’s a list of other miscreants with the corresponding link to the ACCC announcement:

ACCC actions are currently underway against Amcor and Visy Industries for alleged price fixing in the cardboard box market and Seven for misleading and deceptive conduct. The actions of AWB and James Hardie require no further comment.

Let’s get 2007 properly underway with a Crikey list. Nominations, please, of major Australian companies that have broken the law to:[email protected]. And please, hearsay and innuendo will not suffice. We don’t want to start the New Year with an underemployed bevy of corporate lawyers on our backs.

Peter Fray

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Peter Fray
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