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Mitolo’s acquisition of Thomas Foods International’s potato business not opposed

The ACCC will not oppose Mitolo’s proposed acquisition of Thomas Foods International’s (TFI) potato business.

Mitolo and the TFI potato business grow potatoes and operate packing sheds in South Australia, and overlap in the acquisition of some potatoes from third party growers in the state, and the supply of washed potatoes to supermarkets and wholesalers.

“The ACCC closely examined the effect of Mitolo’s acquisition of TFI on South Australian potato growers, rival packing sheds, and retail and wholesale customers of the parties,” ACCC Deputy Chair Mick Keogh said.

“The decline in consumer demand for potatoes has created difficult circumstances for potato growers, which will continue to affect growers regardless of the transaction.”

“However, feedback from potato growers and other industry participants suggested that if Mitolo sought to lower prices it paid growers, most growers would be able to switch to rival packing sheds, and some would be able to swap to growing potatoes for processing into potato products,” Mr Keogh said.

The ACCC also determined that rival packing sheds would continue to provide a viable alternative source of supply for retail and wholesale customers, if Mitolo tried to increase potato prices or decrease quality.

The ACCC lastly considered whether Mitolo’s acquisition of potato varieties currently held by the TFI potato business would affect competition for registered potato variety licenses.

“We concluded that growers and packing sheds will continue to be able to access a range of other varieties as well as future varieties that are being developed, allowing them to compete with Mitolo both now and in the future,” Mr Keogh said.

For more information:
Mitolo Group
Tel: +61 8 8282 9000

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