Canada Bread will be fined $50 million after pleading guilty to its role in a criminal price-fixing arrangement that raised the price of wholesale commercial fresh bread.
Canada’s Competition Bureau said on Wednesday it was the toughest price-fixing fine ever imposed by a Canadian court.
Canada Bread, a subsidiary of Mexico’s Grupo Bimbo, pleaded guilty to four counts of price fixing under the Competition Act.
The Competition Bureau said the bread maker admitted to having entered into an arrangement with its competitor, Weston Foods, to increase the price of various sliced and packaged bread products, such as sandwich buns, hot dog buns and buns.
Price-fixing has resulted in two price increases, in 2007 and 2011. Canada Bread’s senior executives responsible for price-fixing no longer work for the company, the bureau said.
Grupo Bimbo said it was considering “all legal options against those responsible”.