Owner of Houston’s Farm, Sunfresh and Gourmet Selections enters administration

Owner of Houston’s Farm, Sunfresh and Gourmet Selections enters administration

Photo: Sunfresh Salads, via Facebook.

A national vertically integrated farming and ready-made salad manufacturer, known for such brands as Sunfresh in South Australia and Gourmet Selections in Western Australia, has called in voluntary administrators with plans to either restructure or sell the business.

Beginning as Houston's Farm, which is a brand it still maintains, Tasmania-headquartered HS Fresh Food has operations in Queensland, South Australia, Tasmania, Western Australia and NSW, and claims to have one of the broadest sets of growing and processing capabilities within the fresh food sector.

The Australian-owned food producing and processing business specialises in fresh salads, bagged salad leaves, deli products, ready-made meals and pre-prepared vegetables

On 14 June, Ben Campbell, Joanne Dunn and Vaughan Strawbridge of FTI Consulting were appointed voluntary administrators of HS Fresh Food Pty Ltd, HS Fresh Food Holding Pty Ltd, HS Fresh Farms Pty Ltd and HS Salads Pty Ltd.

Photo: Houston's Farm, via Facebook.
Photo: Houston's Farm, via Facebook.

Administrators say the group's operations will continue while a restructuring or sale is sought.

According to LinkedIn, the group has more than 500 staff, although the number of employees affected is yet to be confirmed by administrators. Companies in sectors with itinerant, casual workers such as agribusiness sometimes have inflated figures on such platforms.

"We are working with HS Fresh Food Group’s management team and staff, and other stakeholders to continue operations while we secure the future of the business," says administrator Vaughan Strawbridge.

"A sale process for the business and assets of the HS Fresh Food Group was undertaken and in advanced stages at the time our appointment.

"We intend to continue this process, whilst exploring all available options, and are confident of completing a sale and/or recapitalisation of the business in an expedited timeframe with the support of all relevant stakeholders."

 

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