1729.68 Prohibited acts - injunctive relief.

(A) No processor, handler, distributor, or dealer, or agent thereof, who purchases or contracts to purchase any product from a person who produced the product, or procures for, sells, or otherwise furnishes inputs, services, or supplies to a person shall do either of the following:

(1) Use duress against, coerce, or boycott the person in the exercise of the person's rights to join and belong to a cooperative;

(2) Discriminate against the person with respect to price, quantity, or quality, or other terms of purchase or sale of products or produce, services, or supplies, solely by reason of the person's membership in or marketing agreement with a cooperative.

(B) A member or cooperative on behalf of its member or members may bring an action to enjoin any violation of this section, and, upon filing a sufficient bond, a cooperative is entitled to a temporary restraining order against anyone who violates or threatens to violate this section as set forth in the complaint in the court of common pleas of the county in which the violation occurred. Actions against different defendants may be consolidated, in the discretion of the court, if the alleged violations are of the same provision, have occurred in the same or adjoining counties, relate to the same product, service, or supply, and the consolidation can be made without prejudice to a substantial right of any defendant.

(C) Any person who solicits or persuades or permits or aids or abets, induces, or attempts to induce, any member or other person to breach a marketing agreement with a cooperative, by accepting or receiving from the member or other person, products for sale, marketing, manufacturing, or processing for sale, contrary to the terms of any marketing agreement of which the interfering person has knowledge or notice, is liable to the cooperative for damages caused by such interference, and the cooperative is entitled to an injunction against the interfering person to prevent further breaches and a multiplicity of actions.

(D) Any person that violates or threatens to violate this section shall pay to the cooperative the cooperative's reasonable attorney's fees and other costs incurred by the cooperative in any litigation or proceeding at law or in equity to enforce or defend the cooperative's rights and interests that are protected under this section.

Effective Date: 08-05-1998 .