March 5, 2018 / 12:03 AM / 3 months ago

Saputo discusses sale of Australian milk plant to appease competition watchdog

SYDNEY, March 5 (Reuters) - Canada’s Saputo Inc said on Monday it is discussing plans to sell a milk plant in Victoria state in order to address concerns from Australia’s competition watchdog about its buyout of Murray Goulburn Co-operative.

Canada’s biggest cheesemaker last year agreed to pay up to A$490 million ($380 million) for debt-ridden Murray Goulburn, but the Australian Competition and Consumer Commission (ACCC) said the deal may leave some Victorian farmers little choice when selling their milk.

“Saputo has initiated discussions with the ACCC in respect of a divestment plan for the Koroit dairy plant in order to address the ACCC concerns and to obtain the ACCC clearance,” Saputo said in an emailed statement. ($1 = 1.2897 Australian dollars) (Reporting by Tom Westbrook Editing by Stephen Coates)

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