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Pundit’s Mailbag — Nolan Network And Ocean Spray Status

Jim Prevor’s Perishable Pundit, January 18, 2010

Our coverage of the controversy between Jim and Theresa Nolan, The Nolan Network and Ocean Spray has been extensive. However, many both in and out of the produce trade want to keep up to date:

I’ve enjoyed reading your work, and I wanted to impose on you for a bit of information. I was an in-house attorney at Kraft Foods for 32 years, going to private legal practice and consulting in 2008 . At Kraft, I worked on a number of legal areas, including the the compliance program and antitrust matters. I’ve also written legal treatises on corporate compliance programs and product distribution law.

Your continuing series regarding the Nolan case, and the article in PRODUCE BUSINESS in 2007 really caught my attention, since they touched on so many legal issues (compliance, whistle blowing, price discrimination, PACA), and every reader in the food business knew that the details you recounted were absolutely realistic. So, I’ve been periodically checking on line for more news about the case (which I felt was sad even before Jim Nolan passed away) since the facts would provide an excellent learning example in both of my books.

Have you heard anything more about the status of the case? I’m about to wrap up the semi-annual supplement to my distribution book, and if there is anything you have heard that you can share with me, I would certainly appreciate it.

Thank you for your courtesy.

Theodore L. Banks
Counsel
Schoeman, Updike, Kaufman & Scharf
Chicago, IL

We’ve covered the news and provided analysis here at the Pundit, but the best summation of the story to date was written by Bill Martin and ran in Pundit sister publication, PRODUCE BUSINESS, the piece is titled “Are Any Lessons Learned From Ocean Spray Trial?

The piece quotes the Nolan’s attorney:

“…the turning point in the trial is the exceptional testimony of Theresa Nolan in explaining the produce industry and then describing all of the players so a jury of lay people could understand it. “Once she had done that and I saw the jury was playing pretty close attention, I thought we had a good chance at prevailing,” he says. “There’s testimony right off the bat that was really important and really well received.”

Read the whole piece here.

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