Attorney General Raúl Torrez Announces Lawsuit Challenging Anticompetitive Kroger, Albertsons Merger

Albuquerque, NM — New Mexico Attorney General Raúl Torrez, the Federal Trade Commission (FTC) and a bipartisan coalition of states, today announced the filing of a lawsuit that challenges the proposed merger of Kroger and Albertsons.

Kroger and Albertsons are the two largest national supermarket chains in the country and this merger presents a significant risk of reduced competition and higher food prices nationwide. Kroger and Albertsons are also the two largest supermarket chains in New Mexico. If the merger were to proceed, several areas within the state would see significantly reduced competition among supermarkets. Kroger and Albertsons operate under Smith’s, Price-Rite, Albertson’s and Safeway banners in New Mexico.

“My office proudly announces its collaborative stance alongside multiple states and the Federal Trade Commission in a collective effort to challenge and prevent this anti-competitive merger that threatens fair market dynamics,” said AG Torrez. “This bipartisan legal action underscores our commitment to safeguarding consumer and labor interests to prevent higher grocery prices for New Mexican families and lower wages for employees.”

The lawsuit seeks to block the proposed Albertsons-Kroger merger, alleging it is in violation of the federal Clayton Act which prohibits the acquisition of assets where the effect of such acquisitions may substantially lessen competition or create a monopoly.

Businesses facing less competition have the ability to charge higher prices without providing improvements to the quality of goods. Anticompetitive supermarket mergers can impose other harms, including a reduction in labor market competition which may lower wages or slow wage growth, worsen benefits or working conditions, or result in other degradations of workplace quality.

In filing today’s lawsuit, Attorney General Torrez joins the FTC, and the attorneys general of Arizona, California, the District of Columbia, Illinois, Maryland, Nevada, Oregon, and Wyoming.