The Netherlands

On behalf of the team

On 30 September 2021, the ACM established that three companies, Rotie B.V., UCO Kampen B.V. and Nieuwcom B.V., violated the cartel prohibition when purchasing used deep-frying oil. In total, a fine of nearly EUR 4 million was imposed on the companies involved, with the exception of UCO Kampen B.V. due to a bankruptcy.[1] The ACM established that Rotie B.V. had made cartel agreements with UCO Kampen B.V. and Nieuwcom B.V. The ACM had not found any cartel agreements between UCO Kampen B.V. and Nieuwcom B.V.[2]

Emails and WhatsApp messages have shown that representatives of the companies involved had been in contact with each other about the collection and purchase of used deep-frying oil from suppliers located throughout the Netherlands.[3] The purpose of said conduct was to keep the market calm, to divide suppliers and to bring down the purchase prices, allowing the companies to increase or retain their margins.[4] The ACM found that, in view of the market shares of the companies involved, it has been established that they did not have such a weak position that the conduct had a very minor impact on competition.[5] This was mainly to the detriment of restaurants and snack bars.[6]

[1] ACM Decision, ACM/UIT/562190, paras. 1-3.

[2] ACM Decision, ACM/UIT/562190, para. 4.

[3] ACM Decision, ACM/UIT/562190, para. 25.

[4] ACM Decision, ACM/UIT/562190, para. 26.

[5] ACM Decision, ACM/UIT/562190, para. 38.

[6] ACM Decision, ACM/UIT/562190, para. 4.