Arkansas Attorney General and Robbins Geller Obtain Landmark Ruling in Crop-Protection Products Antitrust Case

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April 3, 2024

The State of Arkansas won a significant victory for its farmers when U.S. District Judge Brian S. Miller for the Eastern District of Arkansas issued an important ruling recently against pesticide manufacturers Syngenta and Corteva. 

Judge Miller denied the defendants’ motion to transfer the State’s antitrust enforcement action to North Carolina, ensuring that Arkansas will retain jurisdiction of the case. 

The antitrust action, brought by the Arkansas Attorney General in 2022, concerns Syngenta’s and Corteva’s “loyalty programs” with distributors and retailers that block cheaper generic crop-protection products from the market. 

The upshot of those loyalty programs is that Arkansas farms (97% of which are family owned) allegedly “for years paid, and continue to pay, tens of millions of dollars more than they lawfully should” for those products, according to the complaint. 

The Arkansas Attorney General filed the action shortly after the State Antitrust Enforcement Venue Act of 2022 went into effect. The Act exempts state antitrust enforcement actions brought by state attorneys general from being transferred to multi-district litigations. As Judge Miller notes in his order: “The State chose to sue defendants in this district, and that choice is given considerable deference.” 

“This is an incredibly important ruling: It makes avoiding responsibility even harder for defendants and displays the power states have to protect their citizens and hold companies accountable,” said partner Stuart A. Davidson. 

Trial is scheduled for May 19, 2025. 

Along with the Office of the Arkansas Attorney General, Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP is litigating the case with The Lanier Law Firm and Reddick Law, PLLC. Robbins Geller attorneys representing the State of Arkansas include Stuart A. Davidson, Arthur L. Shingler III, Lindsey H. Taylor, Alexander C. Cohen, Anny M. Martin, and Jacob G. Gelman. 

About Robbins Geller  

Robbins Geller Rudman & Dowd LLP is one of the world’s leading complex litigation firms, representing plaintiffs in securities fraud, shareholder derivative, antitrust, corporate takeover, and consumer fraud and privacy cases. With 200 lawyers in 10 offices, Robbins Geller is one of the world’s largest plaintiffs’ firms, and the Firm’s attorneys have obtained many of the largest securities, antitrust, and consumer class action recoveries in history.  

The Firm is ranked #1 on the most recent ISS Securities Class Action Services Top 50 Report for recovering more than $1.75 billion for investors in 2022 — the third year in a row Robbins Geller tops the list. And in those three years alone, Robbins Geller recovered nearly $5.3 billion for investors, more than double the amount recovered by any other plaintiffs’ firm. The Firm secured the largest-ever securities fraud class action settlement — $7.2 billion — in In re Enron Corp. Securities Litigation. 

For media inquiries, please contact media@rgrdlaw.com or call (619) 338-3821. 

Arkansas ex rel. Griffin v. Syngenta Crop Protection AG, 2024 WL 183111 (E.D. Ark. Jan. 17, 2024).  

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