Protesters: Declare Osem a monopoly
'The food industry is riddled with monopolies that make the prices of basic items and services significantly higher,' the protesters wrote in a letter to antitrust commissioner.
On Monday, the leaders of this summer's cottage cheese protest urged antitrust commissioner David Gilo to immediately open an investigation into alleged price-fixing in the infant formula market.
The protest leaders, including Itzik Alrov, also demand that Gilo declare Osem a monopoly in baby formula.
"The food industry is riddled with monopolies that make the prices of basic items and services significantly higher," the protesters wrote in a letter to Gilo. "We demand that the commissioner exercise his authority and protect consumers by dismantling the monopolies."
After the Remedia affair in 2003, in which three babies died and more than 20 suffered irreversible nervous-system damage after consuming infant formula lacking an essential B-group vitamin, only two main formula sources remained in Israel: Osem with its Materna brand and Promedico's Similac.
Materna has a 56% share of the baby formula market and Similac has 44%.
"The difference in prices between the products is minimal and does not represent true competition for the consumer," the protesters argue.