Competition Commission has beef with meat suppliers
Seven beef suppliers were raided by the Competition Commission yesterday morning in an investigation into price-fixing.
The commission said it suspected the beef companies of fixing both the prices they paid farmers for calves and subsequently for meat after they had fattened the calves for slaughter.
Simultaneous search and seizure operations were conducted at 13 premises in three provinces.
"The companies - operating from Gauteng, the Free State and Northern Cape - are meat suppliers, also known as feedlots. They purchase weaner calves from farmers in order to bulk-feed them in preparation for slaughtering in the production of beef. They also sell beef to wholesale and retail customers," the commission said.
The seven companies suspected of being members of the cartel are Karan Beef, Sparta Foods, Chalmar Beef, Beefmaster Kimberley, Morgan Beef, Beefcor and Fabvleis.
"The meat industry forms an important part of the food sector, which is one of the commission's priority sectors. The commission remains committed in its quest to fight collusion in the food sector as a whole, as higher prices of food affect the most vulnerable and poor households who spend a disproportionately high percentage of their income on food," the statement said.
The seven suppliers' products are available in upmarket restaurants, a fast food chain and even Abu Dhabi.