Could it be true? Are chocolate prices really fixed? Must I be betrayed and disillusioned by the kind of companies I love the best? So far, the Canadian press has only gotten the big three--Hershey, Nestle, and Cadbury--to admit they're under investigation. Here's how the story was reported yesterday in the Globe and Mail in Toronto:
The (Canadian) Competition Bureau served search warrants on several major bar makers this week requiring them to turn over reams of documents on their pricing arrangements.
“We can confirm that we are investigating alleged anti-competitive practices in the chocolate confectionery industry,” said John Pecman, the bureau's assistant deputy commissioner in the criminal matters branch. “The volume of commerce affected here is definitely potentially in the billions of dollars per year.”
A source familiar with the probe said the bureau is relying on a confidential informant with knowledge of the industry. Mr. Pecman declined to comment on how the probe began, but said the bureau often takes action after receiving information from “whistle blowers and informants.”