Case Details

Year Initiated/Committed


Year Resolved


Settlement Amount



U.S. District Court for the Western District of New York

Docket Number

00 Civ 0707A (M)

Lead State


Participating States



Procter & Gamble Co.,The Clorox Company, Colgate-Palmolive Company, Conopco, Inc., James River Paper Company, Inc., S.C. Johnson & Son, Inc., The Dial Corporation, Dow Brands, L.P.,The Pillsbury Company, Reckitt & Colman, Inc. and Wegmans Food Markets, Inc.

Case Description

New York charged the Procter & Gamble Company (‘P&G’), eight other consumer products manufacturing companies and the Wegmans Food Market Chain (‘Wegmans’), with participating in a conspiracy to eliminate and reduce the number of coupons available to consumers through newspaper inserts in the Western New York market from 1995-1997. The complaint alleged that P&G and Wegmans were the ringleaders of a conspiracy aimed at eliminating the use of coupons in Western New York. From early 1995, P&G and other manufacturers were considering ways to reduce or eliminate the use of coupons which had become costly to manufacturers. In late 1995, P&G announced it would commence a ‘no coupon test’ effective February 1996 and sought Wegmans’ support of that test. Wegmans shared P&G’s desire to eliminate coupons because its policy of doubling manufacturers’ coupons had also become costly to Wegmans. Wegmans engaged in a series of meetings with the other manufacturer defendants and sought their agreement to support the P&G ‘no coupon test’ by also reducing or eliminating coupons in the Western N.Y. marketplace. The complaint alleged that this discontinuation of coupons would result in the loss of millions of dollars to consumers who regularly redeem coupons. The commencement of this action and the settlement agreement that followed resulted in P&G’s elimination of its no coupon test and in the continuation of couponing by the other manufacturer defendants. The terms of the settlement with defendants provided that the settlement monies be used to issue special coupons that were published in newspapers in Western New York and that were redeemable for purchases of grocery items.