Competition issues in the Food Chain Industry


Food processing and retail chains often give rise to competition issues especially due to recent trends of high and volatile commodity prices. The role of anti-trust authorities in addressing competition in the food sector is no different: dealing with anti-competitive mergers, abuse of dominance, cartels and price fixing, vertical restraints and exclusive practices.


Yet, for the overall functioning of the food sector, ensuring competition at different stages of the supply chain is essential: this chain is a complex series of inter-related markets and there exists increasing levels of concentration, mergers and acquisitions, with large multi-product retailers having a dominant role.

The OECD Competition Committee discussed Competition issues in the food chain industry in October 2013 so as to understand how recent developments in the food chain across many countries tie in with increasing concerns about both horizontal and vertical market power.



Competition along the Food Chain, OECD Food Chain Network meeting

Competition and Commodity Price Volatility (2012)

All Competition Policy Roundtables

Competition Home Page ‌ 



Full set of documents (pdf): Materials from this October 2013 discussion include executive summary with key findings, background note, 32 country contributions and a detailed summary of the discussion.

Presentation by Jaap van Driel (Ministry of Economic Affairs, the Netherlands)

Presentation by Steve McCorriston (University of Exeter, United Kingdom)




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