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French poultry giant Groupe Doux has decided to move into receivership to try to turn its ailing business around.

Doux said this afternoon (1 June) it had received the go-ahead from a court in Quimper to opt for receivership for a period of six months.

The company, which has faced pressure from lenders to lower its EUR430m in debts, told just-food earlier this week it was considering such an option as it would allow its debts any any transactions to be frozen while allowing the group to trade normally.

In a statement today, Doux chief executive Jean-Charles Doux said the company had decided against striking a fresh agreement with its lenders.

“By being placed under the receivership ordered by the Commercial Court of Quimper, the Doux Group has opted for safety. The refinancing plans proposed to us were based on short-term solutions that did not offer sufficient guarantees for the continuity and preservation of the historic regional interests of the group,” he said. “With our employees, French producers and growers are our first priority. The procedure will be fully used to ensure the sustainable and profitable growth of our French business.”

Doux, Europe’s largest poultry processor, accumulated debts as it has battled volatile commodity costs and a struggling business in Brazil. Last month, Doux leased out its plants in Brazil to rival meat processor JBS.

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By GlobalData

The company said the move into receivership would help it develop “a business plan focused on its activities in France”. A receiver will work with Doux’s management to draw up those plans and the company Doux said it would implement a package of measures for suppliers and farmers.