DFA Awarded $14.3 Million in Judgment Against Cacique

October 5, 2009 07:00 PM

Dairy Farmers of America (DFA) has been awarded $14.3 million in a breach-of-contract lawsuit against cheese manufacturer Cacique, Inc. 


The judgment came from the Superior Court of the State of California for the County of Los Angeles Oct. 1. It results from a case brought by DFA, the nationwide milk marketing cooperative, against Cacique, the world's largest manufacturer of Hispanic-style cheeses and creams. 


"We are pleased with the outcome,” said Alex Bachelor, DFA's vice president of legal affairs. "We have an obligation to our dairy farmer owners to protect their interests by ensuring that our customers, and others who have a business relationship with DFA, fulfill their contractual obligations to DFA.”

DFA's suit alleged that, in August 2007, Cacique suddenly terminated its contract on 10 days' notice. The terms of the contract required six months prior notice to terminate. DFA incurred more than $13 million in damages as a result of Cacique's failure to purchase milk from DFA during the remaining term of the contract. In addition to decreased milk sales revenues, DFA's damages included increased marketing and transportation costs to secure alternative purchasers for the displaced milk on behalf of its members.


Catherine Merlo is Western editor for Dairy Today. You can reach her at cmerlo@farmjournal.com.

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