A Portland restaurant is suing a consortium of Atlantic salmon producers, alleging that the companies, most of them based overseas, engaged in price-fixing.
The lawsuit by Portland Hunt + Alpine Club alleges that salmon prices have risen over the last four years when they should have been falling. According to the filing in federal court in Maine, the costs associated with raising Atlantic salmon have been mostly stable since 2015, production has increased and the market has shrunk because Russia banned salmon imports in retaliation for the U.S. and some European countries imposing economic sanctions following Russia’s 2014 annexation of the Crimea.
The lawsuit says the lawyers will pursue class action status, which would allow the suit to include hundreds or even thousands of other plaintiffs and can increase the amount of damages that could be recovered if the suit prevails. If that’s the case, Portland Hunt + Alpine Club may become the lead plaintiff, which puts it on the inside track to recover a larger amount of any damages that might be awarded, and also in position to make some decisions in the case, such as whether to approve a settlement.
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