Natural Foods Merchandiser

Gardenburger declares bankruptcy

Gardenburger Inc. filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection earlier this week, and will convert from a publicly held company to a private company.

In July, when NFM reported that Gardenburger was seeking a buyer, few were surprised. Because of the 2002 Sarbanes-Oxley corporate reform act, "It does not pay to be a small public company," analyst Pat Turpin said at the time. Turpin is a partner in Bayside Ventures, a holding company that invests in emerging natural and organic food and beverage companies. Other factors, like competitor Boca Burger selling to food giant Kraft, made survival even more difficult.

Gardenburger said in a news release that the company has financing in place, subject to the approval of the bankruptcy court, to fund its ongoing operations and working capital needs while it restructures.

The Clearfield, Utah-based company was formed in 1985.

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