Barley farmers cry foul over new AB InBev prices
Grain SA charges that AB InBev has contravened one of the conditions set in its acquisition of rival beer maker SABMiller
Farmers have filed a complaint with the Competition Commission about Anheuser-Busch InBev’s (AB InBev’s) decision to change its pricing formula for buying malt barley, a key ingredient in beer making. Grain SA says AB InBev, the world’s biggest brewer, has contravened one of the conditions set when the country’s Competition Tribunal approved its $106bn acquisition of rival beer maker SABMiller. "We are aware of the complaint lodged by Grain SA and have formally responded to the Competition Commission," said AB InBev Africa spokeswoman Robyn Chalmers on Monday. "We have, at all times, conducted our operations in compliance with the conditions imposed by the Competition Tribunal." In a letter to barley farmers, AB InBev said it was changing what it would pay for the 2018 crop to 97% of the price for top grade wheat (B1) from 102% of second-tier wheat (B2). "We are of the opinion that they are not sticking to what was agreed at the tribunal," said Grain SA CEO Jannie de Villiers. 'Comp...