Game Over for the „Sausage Gap“: Germany Adopts a Comprehensive Amendment to its Competition Law

Overview


In July 2014, Germany’s competition authority, the Federal Cartel Office (FCO), imposed fines totalling around 1338 million on 21 sausage manufacturers and 33 senior managers. Over the following months, several of the companies fined made use of a loophole in German competition law by engaging in international restructuring measures. The companies were dissolved and their assets transferred to sister companies or other group companies. The FCO ultimately grudgingly acknowledged that it had had to forfeit around 1238 million, and the loophole became widely known as the “sausage gap”.