Boersen Farms starts settling with creditors

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**Correction: A previous version of this article stated Boersen Farms had filed for bankruptcy. That was not accurate. The farm had asked for permission to file for bankruptcy, but has not formally done so.

ZEELAND TOWNSHIP, Mich. (WOOD) — Boersen Farms has started the process to settle with creditors and is harvesting crops, a representative for the Ottawa County farming giant says.

Court records indicate Boersen Farms near Zeeland was the defendant in lawsuits filed by more than half a dozen creditors seeking some $150 million allegedly owed.

The chief restructuring officer for Boersen Farms, Randy Humphreys, told 24 Hour News 8 Wednesday evening that the farm had settled with creditors, though the paperwork for that had not yet been approved by the court. Humphreys would not provide details of the settlement.

Humphreys said the farm is also harvesting its crops, easing concerns about whether they would be brought in as the lawsuits were resolved.

It wasn’t quite an emergency, but Michigan Farm Bureau officials had said the clock was ticking on those crops.

“Our farmers are pretty well in the throes of soybean harvest across the state,” Kate Thiel, a field crop specialist with the Farm Bureau, said. “Days like today where we have light precipitation can be helpful so that dry down isn’t occurring at such a rapid rate, which will allow our producers a larger window for harvest. But obviously, each individual farmer is impacted a little differently depending on their variety of bean, when they were planted and based on those commodities, those soybeans.”

Because of the litigation, officials with the Farm Bureau wouldn’t comment specifically on Boersen’s situation. But in general, they said a late harvest would have only a limited effect.

“They may have an impact on the individual farmer and their bottom line, their return on investment,” Thiel said, “but big picture from an industry perspective, we’re not anticipating a large impact or ripple effect.”

But what about at the checkout line? Thiel said row crops like soybeans and corn, both of which Boersen grows, don’t show up on your table, so there wouldn’t be a noticeable effect on consumers.

“Because we’re more producing these commodities for feed grade versus food grade,” she explained.

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