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Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte gets fined €216,600

By Vitisphere November 03, 2020
Champagne Nicolas Feuillatte gets fined €216,600
This hefty fine comes at a bad time for the co-operative group - the Champagne industry has been particularly badly hit by the Covid-19 crisis. - crédit photo : CV-CNF

he French competition authorities announced on October 29 that they had meted out a hefty €216,600 fine to the Nicolas Feuillatte Champagne centre (CV-CNF), “For granting exclusive import rights to Nicolas Feuillatte and Palmes d'Or Champagnes on the islands of Saint-Martin, Saint-Barthélemy and Martinique”. The group, with its 80 co-operative winery members, was sued along with two importers – the Martin financial company and Dillon distillery (fined €5,200 and €421,000) – after being found to have infringed the 20 November 2012 law on overseas economic regulation, known as the Lurel law.

Since 22 March 2013, the regulations have banned “agreements or concerted practices whose aim or effect is to grant exclusive import rights that are not justified in the overseas communities”, said the French Competition Authority. It pointed out that exclusive import rights between the CV-CNF and its Caribbean distributors were maintained until 2015 for the islands of Saint Martin and Saint Barthélemy, and until 2016 for Martinique: “The companies involved agreed to maintain them in practice. Nicolas Feuillatte, in agreement with the Dillon distillery, in fact refused to sell to Martinique distributors”.


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