Brazil says ends rift with US over orange juice 'dumping'
* Brazil, U.S. informed WTO that dispute has ended * WTO ruled in Brazil's favor in the dispute in 2011 * U.S. refunded anti-dumping fees paid after March 2011 BRASILIA, Feb 19 (Reuters) - Brazil's government said on Tuesday it had settled a trade dispute it brought to the World Trade Organization in 2008 against the United States over 'anti-dumping' penalties the U.S. imposed on imports of Brazilian orange juice since 2006. Brazil, the world's top orange juice exporter, launched the legal suit to try to overturn the punitive import duties, arguing that the U.S. method of calculating the amount that had been dumped - or imported at unfairly low prices - was illegal. A panel of WTO judges agreed and handed Brazil victory in 2011. The two sides said in February last year that they had agreed a path towards resolving the dispute, and one month later a U.S. trade panel revoked anti-dumping duties of up to 60 percent on Brazilian orange juice, dealing a blow to growers in Florida who had pushed hard to keep them in place. The duties on three major Brazilian orange juice processors - Cutrale Citrus Juice, Citrosuco Paulista and Louis Dreyfus - had been in place since 2006. The United States later gave up its method of calculating dumping after losing a string of cases at the WTO. Brazil and the United States informed WTO authorities late last week that they had formally ended their dispute, a statement from the Brazilian Foreign Affairs Ministry said on Tuesday. Dumping is a predatory trade practice through which producers seek to monopolize a market by selling produce at an unsustainably low level with the aim of driving competitors out of the market. Separately on Tuesday, Brazil estimated its 2013/14 industrial orange crop would produce 281 million 40.8-kg boxes of fruit, 23 percent less than last season.