The proposed sale of Hershey Foods remains on ice pending clarification of the legal situation.

A court in Pennsylvania adjourned yesterday [Wednesday] without ruling on whether to overturn a provisional injunction blocking the sale of the company by the trust that holds a controlling stake.

The trust says it needs to spread its financial risk by diversifying its portfolio, and that will allow it to secure its long-term responsibility to its beneficiary - the Milton Hershey School for underprivileged children.

However, the workforce and local community have reacted with anger and horror to the proposed sale, arguing that it would cause irreparable harm to the town and its people. A lower court imposed the temporary injunction a week ago.

A Pennsylvania appeals court has now deferred the decision and the panel of judges gave no indication of when it would issue a ruling.