US food company Aurora Foods has said it has filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy protection as part of its restructuring plan that includes being sold to Pinnacle Foods.

St Louis-based Aurora, whose brands include Duncan Hines cake mixes, said it has secured US$50m in debtor-in-possession financing, which will enable it to pay vendors and trade creditors so that it can continue to operate.

Aurora announced earlier this year that it planned to file for bankruptcy. It then agreed to sell a controlling stake to buyout firms J P Morgan Partners and J W Childs Equity Partners. Under the bankruptcy plan, J W Childs is to retail an undisclosed stake in Aurora.

Pinnacle Foods was bought by J P Morgan last August, reported Reuters.

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