Judge Passes Remedia Case to Germany

The Jerusalem District court yesterday accepted the motion of the German testing company Lufa, and ruled that an Israeli court was not the proper venue to hear a third-party motion by Heinz-Remedia, which has been sued in the Remedia affair. Parents claiming their infant was hurt by consuming the company's soy-based formula, which lacked adequate amounts of Vitamin B1, are seeking compensation from Remedia.

The formula had been marketed in Israel by Remedia but was made in Germany by a company called Humana Milchunion. Lufa owns and operates a lab that tests foodstuffs, and over the years tested products for Humana. Heinz-Remedia blames the formula disaster on Lufa, claiming it erroneously declared the formula contained high amounts of B1. Heinz-Remedia therefore stopped adding B1, crucial to nervous system development, to the formula.

In December 2005, Judger Yitzhak Inbar accepted Humana and Remedia's request to notify Lufa that they were suing for restitution of the costs. Half a year later, Lufa motioned to overturn his ruling. Meanwhile, Humana and Remedia settled with the parents, a settlement that the court granted the status of a verdict.

However, the judge now ruled that the Israeli court was not the proper venue to discuss a third-party notice, as all the problems and deeds had happened in Germany. He rejected the argument that the Israeli court knew the case thoroughly, and was thereby a proper venue. Rather, it was reasonable to accept Lufa's petition and order the case canceled so it could be referred to Germany.

Humana and Remedia were ordered to cover Lufa's NIS 30,000 legal fees.