BRUSSELS, May 28 (Reuters) - EU antitrust regulators charged Spanish canned vegetables producer Grupo Riberebro Integral on Thursday with taking part in a canned mushrooms cartel, a year after slapping a 32.2-million-euro ($35.22 million) fine on two other firms for the same offence.
The European Commission said it had sent a charge sheet known as a statement of objections to Riberebro and its subsidiary Riberebro Integral S.A.U., a prelude to a fine which can reach up to 10 percent of a company’s global revenue.
“The Commission has concerns that Riberebro may have colluded with other market participants within the EEA to allocate customers and coordinate prices of so-called ‘private label’ canned mushrooms,” the EU competition authority said.
EEA refers to the 28-country European Union, Iceland, Liechtenstein and Norway.
French peer Bonduelle and Dutch company Prochamp admitted to taking part in the cartel in June last year in return for a 10 percent cut in the fine while Riberebro declined to do the same. Dutch producer Lutece alerted the cartel to the regulator and escaped a fine.
$1 = 0.9142 euros Reporting by Foo Yun Chee