EU Fines IFF for Obstructing Fragrance Cartel Investigation
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EU Fines IFF for Obstructing Fragrance Cartel Investigation

THE WHAT? The European Commission has levied a 15.9 million euro (US$17.05 million) fine against U.S. company International Flavors & Fragrances (IFF) and its French affiliate. This penalty is for obstructing an inspection related to an ongoing investigation into a suspected cartel in the fragrance and fragrance ingredients supply sector.

THE DETAILS  During an inspection in March 2023, a senior IFF employee intentionally deleted WhatsApp messages exchanged with a competitor. After this was discovered, IFF immediately acknowledged the infraction and cooperated with the Commission to recover the deleted data.

THE WHY? The fine underscores the European Commission’s commitment to ensuring fair competition and its zero-tolerance policy toward obstruction of investigations. By penalizing IFF, the Commission aims to maintain the integrity of its investigation into the suspected fragrance cartel, which could have significant implications for the industry’s competitive landscape. The ongoing cooperation of the companies involved is crucial for the investigation’s progress and outcome.

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