Prairie Farms Dairy Inc., of Carlinville, Ill., will assume ownership of Southern Belle Dairy operations immediately. Dairy Farmers of America confirmed their sale of the operational assets of Southern Belle Dairy Tuesday. The sale brings to a close the Department of Justice and Commonwealth of Kentucky anti-trust lawsuit filed against DFA.
The lawsuit, first filed in April 2003, claimed that when DFA partnered with the Allen Family Limited Partnership (AFLP) to acquire the Southern Belle operations, it lessened competition for the sale of milk to schools in Eastern Kentucky and Tennessee. After the Federal District Court awarded DFA summary judgment in 2004, the Court of Appeals overturned the order in 2005 and the case returned to the Federal District Court.