Another DFA settlement: This time, co-op to pay $46 million to plaintiffs

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KANSAS CITY, Mo. — In an agreement that covers only a portion of a class action lawsuit, Dairy Farmers of America will pay $46 million to buyers of certain dairy products between 2004 and 2006.

The settlement agreement covers a part of a class action lawsuit against DFA’s trading activity on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange in 2004.

The milk marketing co-op released its statement on the agreement March 22, saying “DFA makes no admission of wrongdoing and will pay $46 million to the plaintiff class.”

“Our farmer leadership and management team have worked diligently to put certain old issues behind us and resolve pending litigation,” the official co-op statement said, nearly word for word of the statement DFA released in January when it agreed to pay $158.6 million to settle a class action lawsuit that alleged raw milk price-fixing in a 14-state region stretching from southern Indiana through the southeastern United States.

“Resolution of both of these lawsuits allows us to remove a source of distraction for our leadership and to avoid additional legal fees,” DFA stated, adding, “Member milk checks and the member equity program will not be impacted.”

Alleged manipulation

The complaint alleges defendants manipulated and raised the prices for cheese on the Chicago Mercantile Exchange Cheese Spot Call Auction market.

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