Attempt to reopen Western Australia's biggest beef processor

Saturday, August 20, 2005

Administrators Ferrier Hodgson are working to get troubled EG Green and Sons, trading as Harvey Beef, back open in two weeks. Approximately 600 workers are directly employed by the company, which is both a major employer in the region and the region's largest meat exporter. South West Chamber of Commerce and Industries president Rolf Stene was quoted as saying "It could affect a lot of people, those 600 workers at the abattoir, farmers, shopkeepers, the service industry it would hit a lot of people right throughout the community." The employees have currently been forced to take annual leave.

Many beef producers are owed money by the company. The Pastoralists and Graziers Association (PGA) is still trying to identify creditors and EG Green and Sons are working with the administrators in order to "maximise returns to creditors". Despite the well known brand, the company has been trading at a loss in recent years. Recent expansions may be at the root of the sudden financial problems that forced the company to suspend operations.

Calls by the Opposition for a government enquiry were rebuffed by the Agriculture Minister's parliamentary secretary, Tony McRae, saying "an inquiry would be counter productive." The State Government has at this stage declined to assist EG Green and Sons.