Wednesday, 20 November 2019 07:55

US milk giant goes bung

Written by  Sudesh Kissun
America’s biggest milk producer Dean Foods, has filed for bankruptcy. America’s biggest milk producer Dean Foods, has filed for bankruptcy.

America's biggest milk producer, Dean Foods, has filed for bankruptcy and is planning to sell assets.

The Dallas listed processor is blaming declining milk sales triggered by increased competition from dairy alternatives such as oat and almond milk.

The company says it plans to use Chapter 11 of the US Bankruptcy Code which allows a debtor to reorganise assets -- keeping the business alive and paying creditors over time.

The company will continue to process milk and supply dairy products to retailers. Customers are expected to receive their dairy products without any interruptions. 

Dean Foods is the largest processor and direct-to-store distributor of fresh fluid milk and other dairy and dairy case products in the US. It has 50 national, regional and local dairy brands as well as private labels. It makes ice cream, cultured products, juices, teas and bottled water. It has 15,000 employees.

New chief executive Eric Beringause says the Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection will allow the company to “continue serving our customers and operating as normal as we work toward the sale of our business”.

He claimed the company had a strong operational footprint and distribution network, a robust range of leading national brands and extensive private label capabilities. 

“Despite our best efforts to make our business more agile and cost-efficient, we continue to be impacted by a challenging operating environment marked by continuing declines in consumer milk consumption. 

“Importantly, we are continuing to provide customers with an uninterrupted supply of high-quality dairy products, as well as supporting our dairy suppliers and other partners.” 

Beringause, who joined Dean Foods three months ago, says he took a hard look at its challenges. He said that in recent months the company put in place a new senior management team with a track record of turning around businesses.

More like this

Learnings from the mid-West

After travelling around the USA's mid-West, Pioneer forage specialist Ian Williams has five pieces of advice for NZ dairy farmers. 

Mechanisation new for the US

The impetus behind developing the Klima stripper back in 2007 was a continual lack of labour during the pruning season.

Featured

 

Dry Dargaville ready to shine

The biggest issue facing organisers of next month’s Northland Field Days is water, says vice president Basil Cole.

» The RNG Weather Report

» Latest Print Issues Online

The Hound

No cameras?

This old mutt notes that it took the Cuddler-in Chief, PM Jacinda Ardern, a very long time to pay a…

Really?

A mate of the Hound reckons despite more farmers growing it and more hectares of hemp in crop these days,…

» Connect with Rural News

» eNewsletter

Subscribe to our weekly newsletter

Popular Reads