Dairy Farmers faces cheese labelling lawsuit

Dairy Farmers is facing legal action after the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) took the company to court for alleged misleading advertising.

The company, which is in the middle of a $1 billion takeover battle for the business, has been accused of alleged “false, misleading and deceptive conduct” around the packaging of cheese brands Mil Lel and Westacre.

The ACCC claims that, between February and March, Dairy Farmers supplied “Romano-style cheese packaged labelled as Parmesan-style cheese.”

In a suit filed at Australia’s federal court, the ACCC said the company had therefore “misrepresented the type of cheese packaged and its nutritional attributes.”

The watchdog is demanding Dairy Farmers publicly admits the wrongdoing and assures it will not repeat the alleged actions in future.

Officials at Dairy Farmers could not be reached for immediate comment.

A court hearing has been set for September.

The ACCC, meanwhile, is set to rule next week on the proposed rival bids for Dairy Farmers from two rival consortiums.

According to local reports, the ACCC will decide whether the consortiums — one between Italian dairy giant Parmalat and local co-operative Murray Goulburn and a second between National Foods and Warrnambool Butter and Cheese Factory — can proceed with their bids for Dairy Farmers.

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