Supermarkets warn of dairy monopoly

The planned merger between dairy cooperatives Friesland Foods and Campina will create a company which is too dominant on the Dutch market, say supermarket groups in Thursday’s Financieele Dagblad.

The new combine will be the third biggest dairy group in the world, with annual turnover of some €8.3bn. Market leader is Nestlé, followed by Danone.
‘This does not make me happy,’ Superunie spokesman Frans Fredrix told the paper. ‘I used to deal with 20 companies. Now there is one left, apart from a handful of family firms.’ Fredrix estimates that the new combine will have 85% of the Dutch market.
A spokesman for Super de Boer said the new company would have a near monopoly. ‘We cannot imagine that the competition authority will approve this deal without conditions,’ he said. ‘This has considerable consequences for the consumer and the dairy industry.’
Campina and Friesland Foods not only produce under their own names but for supermarkets’ own-label products, the paper points out.

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