They’re left with chickenfeed: Farming feed business collapses leaving shareholders owed $13 million

The 80 shareholders of Australian Sugar Cane Feeds are meeting today after the farming feed and mulch business collapsed, leaving them $13 million in the red.

ASCF is based on the Sunshine Coast in Queensland and produces a feed product made from sugarcane called Cow Candy and a mulch product called Hydrocane.

The business had 12 employees and customers across Asia and Australia.

HLB Mann Judd were appointed as administrators and administrator Barry Taylor told SmartCompany he was calling for expressions of interest for the business and assets of ASCF after the business ran into trouble.

“They were not getting the traction they needed in terms of sale volume so for at least the last two years the shareholders have been injecting more funds in to meeting operating costs and, being principally based on sugarcane, the supply side has been soft because of drought and floods,” he says.

Taylor says ASCF owes shareholders around $13 million it also has liabilities to its bank which are secured by assets of $1.6 million, owes employee entitlements of around $100,000 and has liabilities to suppliers of between $40,000 and $50,000.

“I have heard the local shareholders are having a meeting today which is outside the voluntary administration process. They are probably meeting to consider what their opportunities are,” he says.

ASCF continues to trade but of the 12 staff employed when HLF Mann was appointed only four remain.

“We have terminated eight of the staff as there was not a business case for continuing the operation, there is an inventory of the products and some opportunity to continue to produce the Hydrocane mulch, so we have a small staff doing that and at this stage we are concentrating on moving the existing product,” Taylor says.

He says the administrators have already had some expressions of interest for buying the business or assets of ASCF.



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