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Buffalo Wild Wings, Sonic & Jimmy John’s Sue Pork Produces For Price-Fixing

 |  November 3, 2021

Three major chains have filed lawsuits against pork producers and a third-party pricing company accusing them of working together to fix their prices.

Sonic Drive-In, Jimmy John’s and Buffalo Wild Wings, all of which are owned by the Atlanta-based brand operator, have filed federal lawsuits against a host of pork producers, including Smithfield, Tyson, Clemens Food Group, JBS USA, Seaboard Foods and Hormel. They have also sued Agri Stats, an information sharing service central to the allegations.

In doing so, they’ve joined numerous other restaurant chains that have sued protein producers over their pricing and production practices.

Related: Pork Producers Must Face Price-Fixing Claims

The Inspire Brands companies’ lawsuits target Agri Stats and producers that account for 80% of the wholesale pork market.

The lawsuit says that Agri Stats starting in 2009 collected information from the producers for “benchmarking reports” that features profit and production data. The information in the reports “is not the type of information that competitors would provide to one another in a normal, competitive market.”

The lawsuits argue that the reports, which come at least monthly, allowed the producers to monitor one another’s production and control the supply and price of product on the market—thus driving up the prices the restaurants pay.

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