The Supreme Administrative Court in Bulgaria has stated that a total of 24 firms formed a cartel to control the prices of eggs and poultry meat in the country.
The competition watchdog established that in 2002-2007 the Union of Poultry Breeders, the branch organisation of egg and poultry producers in Bulgaria, organised a number of meetings between its members in order to coordinate their price-setting.
The producers of eggs coordinated simultaneously the prices and volume of their production. As a result, in June-August 2007, the egg prices in Bulgaria skyrocket surpassing the average EU price.
In 2002-2007, the poultry farmers are found to have exchanged commercial information regularly in order to maintain a minimum price level for chicken meat.
The recent ruling is not final and can still be appealed but it is one more ruling confirming the forming of informal cartel agreements in various food production sectors in Bulgaria. So far in the country cartel agreements have been discovered in milk production, wheat bread production, and sunflower oil.