The Commission alleges that Milfos breached the Commerce Act by engaging in cartel conduct between mid-2012 and September 2014.
GEA told DairyReporter the litigation concerns joint venture arrangements between the subsidiary and a supplier in 2011. At that time, the subsidiary was not part of the GEA Group, and GEA ended the arrangements in 2014.
GEA purchased the Hamilton-based company Milfos in November 2012.
Common quote calculator
The conduct relates to Milfos allegedly entering into an agreement with a competitor to fix, control or maintain the prices of milk testing products and services and herd management systems.
The Commission alleges that Milfos and its competitor agreed to use a common quote calculator to generate quotes for retail customers.
The Commission is seeking a declaration that Milfos breached the Commerce Act, a financial penalty and costs. The Commission has also warned Smart Farm Technologies Limited over its role.
Milfos is a designer, manufacturer and installer of dairy technologies for milking, cooling, stalling and automation. Its primary business is offering the systems and equipment required for milking systems, including sheds, stalls and milking equipment (including milk sensors), and herd management systems.
GEA said it is cooperating closely with the authorities. Furthermore, GEA said the company follows strict worldwide compliance guidelines.