EU Probes Chocolate Price Fixing

Hershey, Mars, others suspected of conspiracy
By Jane Yager,  Newser Staff
Posted Feb 20, 2008 6:22 AM CST
Stacks of different types of large Hershey's chocolate bars are seen on a shelf in a downtown Pittsburgh candy store on Thursday, April 19, 2007. The Hershey Co., the nation's largest candymaker, is under...   (Associated Press)
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(Newser) – The European Commission suspects candy giant Hershey of conspiring with other chocolate and candy manufacturers in an industry-wide price-fixing scheme, AP reports. Both Hershey and rival Mars recently received requests for information from the commission after some 50 civil lawsuits in the US have alleged price fixing. The two companies say they are cooperating.

 A Canadian investigation of price-fixing among Hershey, Mars, Cadbury and Nestle became public in November 2007, and the German government last week launched an inquiry accusing Mars, Nestle, Kraft and four other confectionery producers of a price-rigging conspiracy. While the US has the world's largest candy market, Europeans are the biggest per-capita consumers of sweets.