Special to 1812Blockhouse
In a complaint filed on April 21 of this year, the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) alleged that Jones Potato Chip Co. of Mansfield failed to make full payment promptly in the total amount of $438,673 to four sellers for multiple lots of produce in violation of the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA). In this case, Jones Potato Chip Co. paid sellers for produce, but not in a timely fashion in accordance with the PACA.
After the complaint was filed, USDA and Jones Potato Chip Co. entered into a consent decision and order in which Jones Potato Chip Co. agreed to pay a civil penalty in the amount of $5,000 for making untimely payments to sellers for produce purchases. As a result of Jones Potato Chip Co. satisfying the terms of the consent decision and order, the finding that it had committed repeated and flagrant PACA violations was permanently abated without further process and the case has been closed.
The PACA Division, a part of AMS’ Fair Trade Practices Program, regulates fair trading practices of produce businesses that are operating subject to PACA, including buyers, sellers, commission merchants, dealers and brokers within the fruit and vegetable industry.
In the past three years, USDA resolved approximately 3,500 PACA claims involving more than $58 million. PACA staff also assisted more than 7,800 callers with issues valued at approximately $148 million. These are just two examples of how USDA continues to support the fruit and vegetable industry.
For further information, contact Corey Elliot, Chief, Investigative Enforcement Branch, at (202) 720-6873, or by email at [email protected]