Leamington, ON-based greenhouse grower Lakeside Produce Inc. has filed for bankruptcy, owing $188 million (Canadian) to creditors. The company, which specializes in growing conventional and organic fresh produce such as tomatoes, cucumbers, bell peppers, and eggplant, has been delisted due to the filing.
Produce Blue Book, a leading credit rating & marting information for the produce industry, reported that: “The filing in the Ontario Superior Court of Justice, Windsor Division, under case No. 35-124676, shows that the company has $187,889,242 in total liabilities, $18.3 million in unsecured creditors, and $166 million as secured claims. It listed $3.58 million in total assets.”
The list of 300 unsecured creditors includes:
- U.S. and Canadian produce suppliers.
- Retail and food service buyers.
- Transportation companies.
The first meeting of bankruptcy creditors will be held on February 2, 2023, at 1:00 PM via conference call or Phone # -1-647-749-1785 – Conference ID 108 895 248#.
According to Bill Zentner, Vice President of Ratings Service for Blue Book, Lakeside filed an “assignment” in bankruptcy, Canada’s version of chapter 7. Insolvency trustee Ernst & Young made the filing.
Lakeside Produce is a greenhouse grower in Leamington, ON, Taylor, MI, and McAllen, TX, and has been delivering produce for 75 years. The company’s bankruptcy filing is a significant development in the produce industry, as Lakeside has been a major player in the North American market. As a result, the bankruptcy proceedings’ outcome will substantially impact the company’s creditors, employees, and the industry as a whole.
According to Karen Davidson from The Grower, “The degree of hurt will depend on their suppliers’ size and location, the immediate impact will be on those in southern Ontario, but it will then reverberate onto American companies as well.”
Image provided by Lakeshide Produce