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Retailers Applaud as Judge Strikes Fed Swipe-Fee Cap

WASHINGTON — Retailers on Wednesday applauded a federal judge’s decision to strike down the way the Federal Reserve had set debit card swipe fees, calling the ruling “a major victory for supermarket shoppers.”


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U.S. District Court Judge Richard Leon said the Federal Reserve misapplied the intent of 2010 swipe-fee overhaul in Congress, resulting in higher fees resulting from including costs that were not intended to be a part of the fee. Retail groups including Food Marketing Institute, National Retail Federation, National Restaurant Association and the National Association of Convenience Stores had brought the suit.

“We are delighted that the court agreed that the Federal Reserve Board exceeded its authority under the law in nearly doubling the interchange fees banks are allowed to charge merchants for debit transactions,” FMI said in a statement. “This ruling marks a major a victory for supermarket shoppers and will ultimately result in lower costs at the checkout line by billions.”

Read more: Battle Heats Up Over Antitrust Settlement

The ruling means the Federal Reserve Board must come up with a new rule.

“Congress clearly told the Fed to introduce competition and transparency into the debit card marketplace by making multiple networks available, so as to reduce swipe fees for merchants and their customers,” Mallory Duncan, senior vice president and general counsel of NRF, said in a statement. “The Fed failed to do so, and the court rightly ruled against them as a result. Today’s decision is the first step in setting these initial wrongs right and will ensure that swipe fee reform is done correctly.”

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Frost strikes lemons in Northwest Argentina

Frost strikes lemons in Northwest Argentina

All Lemon has announced announces an increase in their quality control as a consecuence of the a high frost damage in Northwest Argentina during this last week of July.

During days of harsh climate, the fruit was exposed to temperatures between -2 ° to -11 ° for 3-12 hours per day. This led to an alert in the quality control processes, designed to preserve the quality of the lemons for export, minimizing the risk of including damaged fruit to shipments.

It is still too early to give precise details of how much of the crop has been frost damaged, but All Lemon anticipates reduced shipments as a result, commencing around week 31.

All Lemon member companies have taken a number of measure to minimise the damage:

• Comprehensive review of the batch field to harvest to make sure there are no visible symptoms of frost. Harvest was postponed until damage becomes more visible.
• A systematic sampling of fruit entering the packing process. The minimum sample size was 100 units per sample.

Meanwhile, All Lemon inspectors must:
•    Increase the number of visits by 50%, every week and in every packing line.
•    Increase in each visit the number of samples for analysis.
•    In addition to inspecting finished boxes, inspectors began to control the fruit that comes directly from the field (preselection).
•    Reinforce the advice provided to the sixteen member companies to implement preventive controls aimed at detecting fruit damaged by the frost.

The 2013 season’s first stage developed during a rapidly changing climate. This year in Northwestern Argentina there was a mild Winter start. It was very dry, with high temperatures and low rainfall. The Summer has also been hot and dry.

These factors determined problems for the early season fruit. A medium to small size fruit is predominant as a result.

For more information:
Martina Delacroix
All Lemon
[email protected]

Publication date: 7/26/2013