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Brancourts crumbles under dairy industry pressures

Australian dairy company Brancourts has gone into administration as a result of industry challenges including high milk prices.

The fourth generation family-owned business has been operating in Australia for over 123 years old, producing cottage cheese, yoghurt and condensed milk products for Woolworths supermarkets.

On Monday, accounting firm PKF was appointed as voluntary administrators of Brancourt Dairy. The dairy business employs over 100 staff across processing plants in Hexham, NSW, Taralgon, Victoria and a head office in North Sydney.

In a statement PKF said that although the business is still trading, 50 members of the manufacturing team were stood down on Friday, with the remaining staff covering customer relations, logistics and reduced production activity to fulfil orders from available stock.

PKF said they are “urgently pursuing options for a sale” but are also looking at restructuring options for the business.

The director of Brancourts Dairy appointed administrators due to current challenges the business faced including high milk prices and the company’s inability to reflect these increased costs in its end products.

Brancourt Dairy occupied an estimated 60 per cent of the cottage cheese market share in Australia and 50 per cent of the local market for sweetened condensed milk products. It also held 30 per cent market share of this market in Japan.

PKF expects employee entitlements will be met either through a sale of the business, recoveries from the sale of stock, or through the Commonwealth Government’s Fair Entitlements Guarantee (FEG) Scheme.

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