Our firm acted for one of Australia’s largest salad and vegetable farmers in Victoria, selling products to independent supermarkets and wholesale grocers. The client’s group structure comprised approximately 28 corporate entities.
In 2016, a contamination event occurred regarding some of our client’s fresh produce from an upstream event, causing a national product recall of some products. The recall event resulted in a serious business interruption to our client, losing numerous large clients, and taking many months to re-establish supply to other clients.
Proceedings were commenced in the Supreme Court of Victoria against our client’s insurance agent/broker and insurer. The claim alleged negligence because of a breach of insurance codes of conduct, common law and contractual duties, and misleading and deceptive conduct.
These claims centred on the contention that our client was led to believe it had adequate insurance to cover income lost because of a product recall, whereas such insurance cover was not in place.
The case involved, among other things:
The case dealt with expert evidence as to:
The proceeding ran for more than 2.5 years, during which time three mediations did not resolve the matter. The trial ran for approximately eight days in the Supreme Court before being settled on confidential terms in 2021.