Is Unloading Produce an Act of Acceptance?

As a general rule, the unloading or partial unloading of the transport is an act of acceptance.  UCC 2-606(1) (c).  See also 7 C.F.R. 46.2 (dd)(1).

M. J. Duer & Co., Inc. v. The J. F. Sanson & Sons Co. and C. H. Robinson Co., 49 Agric. Dec. 620 (1990); Jim Hronis & Sons v. M. Pagano & Sons, Inc., 46 Agric. Dec. 1010 (1987); Harvest Fresh Produce, Inc. v. Clark-Ehre Produce Co., 39 Agric. Dec. 703 (1980); Crown Orchard Co. v. Mid – Valley Prod. Corp., 34 Agric. Dec. 1381 at 1385 (1975); Theron Hooker Co. v. Ben Gatz Co., 30 Agric. Dec.1109 (1971); Conn & Scalise Co., Inc. v. Frank J. Crivella & Co., Inc., 20 Agric. Dec. 415 (1961); Charles P. Tatt Fruit Co. v. Mac’s Produce, 9 Agric. Dec. 802 (1950).

Where tomatoes were unloaded prior to inspection, and Respondent, after seeing the results of the inspection, notified Complainant that the load was being rejected, it was held that Respondent’s attempted rejection was illegal and ineffective because the unloading of the tomatoes amounted to an acceptance.  J&J Produce Co., Inc. v. Weis-Buy Services, Inc., 58 Agric. Dec. 1095 (1999).

Where Respondent gave notice of rejection following the unloading of produce the rejection was ineffective, and the load was deemed to have been accepted. The Lionheart Group, Inc. v. Sy Katz Produce, Inc., 59 Agric. Dec. 449 (2000).

WHEN UNLOADING IS NOT AN ACCEPTANCE

Where Complainant was notified prior to unloading and specifically requested an unrestricted inspection.  Under limited circumstances such as unloading for the purpose of inspection or to retrieve other produce from the nose of the truck, and where the product is then placed back on the truck within a reasonable time, unloading will not be deemed an acceptance.  Pope Packing & Sales v. Santa Fe Veg. Growers Coop. A’ssn., 38 Agric. Dec. 101 (1979).

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