USDA Files Action Against So Ono Food Products LLC in Hawaii for Alleged PACA Violations

Wed. May 13th, 2020
- by Jordan Okumura     

WASHINGTON, DC - The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has filed an administrative complaint against So Ono Food Products LLC as part of its efforts to enforce the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA) and ensure fair trading practices within the U.S. produce industry. The company, operating out of Hawaii, allegedly failed to make payment promptly to seven produce sellers in the amount of $1,344,994 from March 2018 through March 2019.

Direct from the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service:

So Ono Food Products LLC will have an opportunity to request a hearing. Should the USDA find that the company committed repeated and flagrant violations, it would be barred from the produce industry as a licensee for three years, or two years with the posting of a USDA-approved surety bond. Furthermore, its principals could not be employed by or affiliated with any PACA licensee for two years, or one year with the posting of a USDA-approved surety bond.

The PACA Division, which is a part of AMS’ Fair Trade Practices Program, regulates fair trading practices of produce businesses that are operating subject to the PACA, including buyers, sellers, commission merchants, dealers, and brokers within the fruit and vegetable industry.

In the past three years, the USDA resolved approximately 3,500 PACA claims involving more than $58 million. PACA staff also assisted more than 7,800 callers with issues valued at approximately $148 million. These are just two examples of how the USDA continues to support the fruit and vegetable industry.

For more information and to read the press release in its entirety, please visit the link here.

USDA’s Agricultural Marketing Service