July 30, 2018 / 1:24 PM / 19 days ago

EU clears Total Produce purchase of Dole stake, with condition

BRUSSELS (Reuters) - Irish fresh food producer Total Produce (T7O.I) on Monday received regulatory clearance in the European Union for its purchase of a 45 percent stake in U.S. peer Dole [DFCI.UL], subject to the sale of Swedish business.

The European Commission, which acts as the competition supervisor in the European Union, said it was concerned about competition in the market for bagged salads in Sweden, as only one major competitor would have remained.

“The Commission was concerned that the combined entity would not have faced sufficient competitive pressure from this remaining player,” the EU executive said in a statement.

The Commission said the companies had offered to sell Saba Fresh Cuts AB, Dole’s bagged salad business in Sweden, to address these concern.

Reporting by Robert-Jan Bartunek; editing by Philip Blenkinsop

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