Dean Foods Co. has agreed to settle a class action lawsuit brought by dairy farmers in Southeastern states for $140 million. The U.S. dairy company will pay the amount over 4 to 5 years into a fund that will be distributed to the dairy farmers. It will make an initial payment of $60 million upon preliminary approval by the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Tennessee. Subsequent payments of $20 million are to be made in each of the following four years. Dean Foods will take a charge in the second quarter on the settlement.
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