Nation’s Largest Milk Producer Files for Bankruptcy Protection
Southern Food Group, LLC d/b/a Dean Foods and 42 affiliated companies filed petitions today under Chapter 11 of the Bankruptcy Code in the Southern District of Texas, Houston Division. The Debtors have asked that all cases be jointly administered for procedural purposes. In its bankruptcy petition, Dean Foods lists $2.29 billion in assets and $2.18 billion in debts. Dallas based Dean Foods is America’s largest milk producer and has struggled in recent years, as many Americans switch from brand name dairy milk to non-dairy and private label alternatives. According to the U.S. Department of Agriculture, Americans consume 26% less milk today than they did 20 years ago. Dean Foods reported net losses in 8 of the past 10 quarters. The Chapter 11 bankruptcy filing allows the company to continue running its business and reorganize its debt and unfunded pension obligations while it attempts to sell the company and/or its assets.