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USDA Cites Imperial Frozen Foods Op Co LLC in North Carolina for PACA Violations

USDA Cites Imperial Frozen Foods Op Co LLC in North Carolina for PACA Violations



WASHINGTON, DC - The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) announced that it has imposed sanctions on Imperial Frozen Foods Op Co LLC, operating out of Wake Forest, North Carolina, for its violation of the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA). The sanctions include barring the business and its principal operator from engaging in PACA-licensed business or activities without USDA approval.

Direct from the USDA Agricultural Marketing Service:

Imperial failed to pay $5,247,130 to 30 sellers for produce that was purchased, received, and accepted in interstate and foreign commerce from May 2019 to January 2020. This is in violation of the PACA. Imperial cannot operate in the produce industry until March 2, 2023, and then only after it applies for and is issued a new PACA license by USDA.

The company’s principal, Craig Higgins, may not be employed by or affiliated with any PACA licensee until March 2, 2022, and then only with the posting of a USDA approved surety bond.

USDA is required to publish the finding that a business has committed willful, repeated, and flagrant violations of PACA as well as impose restrictions against those principals determined to be responsibly connected to the business during the violation period. Those individuals, including sole proprietors, partners, members, managers, officers, directors, or major stockholders may not be employed by or affiliated with any PACA licensee without USDA approval.

By issuing these penalties, USDA continues to enforce the prompt and full payment for produce while protecting the rights of sellers and buyers in the marketplace.


For more information, and to read the press release in its entirety, click here.

USDA's Agricultural Marketing Service



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