Achieving Sustainability in a Competitive Environment – the German Competition Authority Concludes Examination of Sector Initiatives

The German Competition Authority (“the Bundeskartellamt”) has concluded the examination of two separate business cooperations and sustainability initiatives: An initiative launched by the German retail sector and Deutsche Gesellschaft für Internationale Zusammenarbeit (GIZ) GmbH to introduce living wages in the banana sector as well as current plans on expanding the animal welfare initiative “Initiative Tierwohl” to include cattle fattening. These reviews are part of the authority’s offer to advise businesses on cooperations and provide guidance especially on how to ensure that sustainability strategies are embedded in competition law.

The Bundeskartellamt has no competition concerns about the food retail sector’s voluntary commitment to set common standards for wages in the banana sector.

The Bundeskartellamt has provided guidance to the animal welfare initiative “Initiative Tierwohl” since 2014 and in the past years has particularly encouraged improvements regarding product labelling, thus making it easier for consumers to identify the meat on offer that actually comes from a participating farm with improved standards. Going forward, the authority is calling for the inclusion of more competition elements in the structure of the financing model.

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Zumbul Attorneys at Law

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