Sausage brand Porky Whites has been saved from the brink after the family of its founders bought it out of administration.
Surrey-based brand owner G White & Co was placed into administration on 5 November following several months of financial difficulties.
However, Graham and Fran White, the son and granddaughter of co-founder Jim White – who opened his first butcher shop with brother Harry in 1935 – completed a deal to buy the assets of the business on the same day.
They will now trade under the Porky Whites name, with Fran White taking over as MD. Long-serving former MD Chris Price left the business during the summer.
An own label sausage supply deal agreed with a major supermarket chain in July quickly became unprofitable for the business, said Fran White.
The supplier’s decision to pull out of the deal ultimately led to a dispute with the retailer over a loss of profit claim. The subsequent effect on the company’s bottom line meant it also lost its banking facilities, she told The Grocer.
“The cash burn on this contract was huge and it was rapidly losing money. Continuing with the contract would have had dire consequences for the business,” she said. “We lost a significant amount of money very quickly.”
Following advice from insolvency practitioners, the business was put up for sale. But after no credible offers were received, a decision was made to place it into administration. The White family then bought its assets this week and relaunched under a different name.
“We wanted to protect the brand and the jobs of our 25 staff,” White added, while thanking the company’s suppliers for their support since the summer.
Porky Whites would now look to rebuild sales in both retail and wholesale, she added. Selected SKUs are currently listed by Sainsbury’s, Tesco, Asda and Morrisons.
“A lot of lessons have been learnt,” said White, who added the collapse of the business should act as a cautionary tale for small suppliers before entering own label deals with the mults.
“But we’re confident we’ve done the right thing and are hoping for decent trading in the run-up to Christmas.”