October 10, 2016 News

Morrison Cohen Successfully Concludes Epic Litigation Against Its Dutch Client, Ventilex B.V.

October 10, 2016 - Morrison Cohen recently achieved a successful end to an unusually  long running series of litigations brought against its Dutch client, Ventilex B.V., by Paramount Farms, Inc., owned by the billionaire Stewart Resnick and his wife.  After eight years of litigation, across 10 different forums in three different states (New York, Ohio and California), including a trial in federal court and various actions in state courts (and appeals to the Ninth Circuit and Ohio appellate courts), a bankruptcy proceeding in Ohio and a AAA arbitration proceeding, with a number of reported decisions along the way, Paramount Farms finally raised a white flag and decided not to appeal the recent summary judgment dismissal in Ohio of its sole remaining claim against Ventilex.

The litigation saga arose out of the alleged failure of an almond pasteurizer to perform sufficiently to pass the requisite testing criteria in a timely manner.  Ventilex manufactured the pasteurizer in the Netherlands and its Ohio subsidiary, Ventilex USA, supplied it to Paramount Farms, owner of the largest almond farm in California. Resnick’s wholly owned company, Roll International, now known as The Wonderful Company, owns Paramount Farms as well as Pom, Fiji water, Teleflora and a number of other companies. Paramount Farms claimed that the pasteurizer was defective and caused many millions of dollars in damage to its almond business.  It persistently pursued Ventilex ever since but never succeeded in its many claims against the Dutch parent company.  Donald Chase and Edward Gilbert led the Ventilex defense team.