Trade Practices and Antitrust Regulation

ORS 646.737
Exemption for negotiations governing sale price of Oregon blackberries

  • supervision by Director of Agriculture
  • rules
  • fees


As used in this section:


“Blackberry” means a bramble of the genus Rubus identified by State Department of Agriculture rule as a blackberry.


“Blackberry regulatory program” means the state regulatory program described in subsection (2) of this section that is actively supervised by the Director of Agriculture and that authorizes parties to engage in certain collective bargaining and negotiations to establish the price of blackberries to be produced and sold to dealers in the future.


“Dealer” means:


A dealer as defined in ORS 646.515 (Definitions for ORS 646.515 to 646.545); or


A licensed food processor that is a cooperative.


“Parties” or “party” means producers, cooperative bargaining associations, cooperatives or dealers that are participants in the blackberry regulatory program.


It is the intent of this section and ORS 646.535 (Unfair trade practices prohibited) (2) and 646.740 (Permitted activities) (10) to displace competition with a regulatory program in the Oregon blackberry industry to a limited degree. The regulatory program is intended to grant immunity from federal and state antitrust laws to Oregon blackberry producers and dealers for the limited purpose of allowing the producers and the dealers to bargain collectively and to arrive at a negotiated price for the sale of Oregon blackberries by the producers to the dealers. The activities of any party that comply with this section may not be considered to be in restraint of trade, a conspiracy or combination or any other unlawful activity in violation of any provision of ORS 646.705 (Definitions for ORS 136.617 and 646.705 to 646.805) to 646.826 (Counsel for persons testifying) or federal antitrust laws.


An Oregon blackberry cooperative or cooperative bargaining association may negotiate with one or more dealers to establish the price at which members of the cooperative or bargaining association will sell Oregon blackberries to be produced by or under the control of members of the cooperative or bargaining association. The dealers may negotiate the price of Oregon blackberries through a committee that sets forth the views of the dealers and votes on any issues being negotiated as authorized by this section, including the price of Oregon blackberries. However, a person that is both a member of an Oregon blackberry cooperative or cooperative bargaining association and a member of a dealer described in subsection (1)(c)(B) of this section may not participate in negotiations under this section.


The director shall actively supervise the conduct of a party in establishing the price of Oregon blackberries to be produced and sold to dealers at a future date. The director shall supervise the negotiations between the parties, review the prices established by the negotiations and approve the prices proposed by the parties before the prices take effect. Proposed prices and any adjustments to previously approved prices must be approved by the director before the prices or adjustments may be implemented.


The director may compel the parties to take whatever action the director considers necessary to:


Ensure that the parties are engaging in conduct that is authorized under this section;


Ensure that the policies of this state are being fulfilled under the blackberry regulatory program; and


Enjoin conduct by any of the parties that is not authorized by the director or conduct that the director finds does not advance the interests of this state in carrying out the blackberry regulatory program.


The director may designate employees of the State Department of Agriculture to carry out the responsibility of actively supervising the conduct of the parties, including serving as intermediaries between prospective parties.


The director may adopt rules to carry out the director’s authority under this section. The director by rule shall set and collect fees from the parties who are participants in the blackberry regulatory program. The fees shall be deposited in the Department of Agriculture Account established under ORS 561.150 (Department of Agriculture Account). [Formerly 62.847]
Note: See note under 646.736 (Public policy).
§§ 646.705 to 646.815

Atty. Gen. Opinions

Meetings between members of associations having PUC authority to transport logs, poles and piling and mills and other shippers to jointly agree on rate for transportation, (1981) Vol 41, p 444

Law Review Citations

55 OLR 537-551 (1976); 56 OLR 331 (1977)

Chapter 646

Notes of Decisions

Subject matter regulated by this chapter is not "preempted" by Federal Robinson-Patman Act so as to render this chapter invalid. W. J. Seufert v. Nat. Restaurant Supply Co., 266 Or 92, 511 P2d 363 (1973)

Whether an injunction should issue when a court finds a violation of the Act is a matter of discretion. State ex rel Johnson v. International Harvester Co., 25 Or App 9, 548 P2d 176 (1976)

This chapter imposes no affirmative duty to inform customers of rates in absence of request, but prohibits making information about prices available to some customers and not others. Wildish Sand & Gravel v. Northwest Natural Gas Co., 103 Or App 215, 796 P2d 1237 (1990), Sup Ct review denied


Last accessed
Jun. 26, 2021