USDA Holds Nicholas Allen Responsibly Connected to Allens Inc., also known as Veg Liquidation Inc., for PACA Violations

Date: 
Wednesday, October 16, 2019 - 9:30am
Contact Info: 

Release No.: 138-19

WASHINGTON, Oct. 16, 2019 – The U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) has found Nicholas Allen responsibly connected to Allens Inc., Siloam Springs, Ark.  Allens Inc., failed to pay $9,759,843 to 40 produce sellers for 2,312 lots of produce. This is in violation of the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act (PACA).

Nicholas Allen challenged the initial determination that he was responsibly connected to Allens Inc. However, the USDA recently affirmed that Nicholas Allen was responsibly connected to the company during the violation period.

As a result, Nicholas Allen may not be employed or affiliated with any PACA licensee until Sept. 25, 2020, and then only with the posting of a USDA-approved surety bond. In addition, Nicholas Allen cannot be licensed in the produce industry until Sept. 25, 2021, and then only with the posting of a USDA-approved surety bond.

The PACA Division, which is in the Fair Trade Practices Program in the Agricultural Marketing Service, regulates fair trading practices of produce businesses that are operating subject to PACA, including buyers, sellers, commission merchants, dealers and brokers within the fruit and vegetable industry.

In the past three years, USDA resolved approximately 3,500 PACA claims involving more than $58 million. PACA staff also assisted more than 7,800 callers with issues valued at approximately $148 million. These are just two examples of how USDA continues to support the fruit and vegetable industry.

For further information, contact Travis M. Hubbs, Chief, Investigative Enforcement Branch, at (202) 720-6873, or by email at PACAInvestigations@usda.gov.

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