PACA claims due in Adams Produce case

07/12/2012 05:01:00 PM
Coral Beach

Produce suppliers who believe they are owed money by Adams Produce Co. LLC have until Aug. 3 to file proofs of claim regarding accounts covered by the Perishable Agricultural Commodities Act.

Judge Tamara Mitchell is presiding over the Birmingham, Ala., produce company’s bankruptcy case. The case includes as much as $50 million in total debt and more than $16 million in secured and unsecured PACA claims.

Mitchell also set the schedule for payments to PACA creditors. The first distribution of payments on undisputed PACA claims is due Oct 19.

Both deadlines are part of a PACA procedure plan that attorneys for Adams, its bank and several produce creditors developed.

Attorney Jason Klinowski, from Freeborn & Peters in Chicago, and Larry Meuers of Meuers Law Firm in Naples, Fla., represent produce companies seeking payment from Adams and were key players in the development of the plan. They worked with lawyers representing Adams, PNC Bank and other parties to resolve how the PACA claims should move forward.

“Getting the PACA trust beneficiaries paid quickly was our No. 1 priority,” Klinowski said. “A lot of good attorneys worked through some tough issues … Having been intimately involved in that process, I can tell you that it is not only a solid work product but the best way to get the PACA trust beneficiaries paid quickly.”

Klinowski represents Grover Bailey Tomato House Inc., Pensacola, Fla., seeking more than $176,000; and Lee’s Produce, Thomasville, Ga., seeking more than $67,000. Klinowski has been working closely with attorney Steve Leara, Wallace, Jordan, Ratliff & Brandt LLC in Birmingham, who represents Alex Kontos Fruit Co. Inc., Birmingham, seeking almost $1 million.

Leara and Klinowski’s clients have been at odds with a group of PACA creditors represented by Meuers, on how to proceed with the case. Those other PACA creditors include Pro*Act LLC, Monterey, Calif., which has the largest PACA claim listed so far, at almost $5 million.

Other key dates in the PACA procedure, as ordered by Mitchell, include:

  • Aug. 3: Deadline for Adams to file PACA trust asset report;
  • Aug. 24: Deadline for objections to PACA claims/Adams’ PACA trust asset report;
  • Nov. 30 and continuing for six months: Adams must make distributions to PACA creditors on the last day of each month; and
  • Dec. 7: Deadline for motions related to disputed PACA claims.



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james    
pensacola  |  July, 13, 2012 at 08:53 AM

How about the hard working poor employees who get screwed by adams co. They didn't collect checks for the final three weeks . Thiefs shame on you.

CB    
Houston  |  July, 13, 2012 at 10:15 AM

Yes James, sad but true. The last PACA case that my company was involved in had some of the same troubling questions. Companies that were owed 5 or 6 thousand got 100-150 bucks! But, the lawyers? Full pay for their bills...in that case over 75,000. It is NOT a fair system...

Kevin    
Kalamazoo  |  July, 13, 2012 at 11:08 AM

Is the machinery that Adams was using available for sale? Please contact us at 269-679-2020with information regarding this machinery.

Ted    
Sanannah  |  July, 13, 2012 at 12:12 PM

Here is a thought why aren't trucks that transport the same products covered under the PACA Trust also covered for thier freight to bring the same product to these companies that are going out of business. They don't have Western Growers

Common Law    
MS  |  July, 13, 2012 at 08:00 PM

All machinery was leased out to Adams Produce, and to James,with all with all due respect to you, but the legal system is NOT for the citizens of this ONCE great country but towards the interest of the BUSINESSES and interest of the GOVERNMENT themselves The middle class and poor get ripped off daily in this present day and all we all to do is accept and tolerate!!!! Now is the time of awaking, to see what is actually going on and stand up for yourselves to take control back from our GOVERMENT

babs    
alabama  |  July, 17, 2012 at 05:44 PM

Paca never collected one red cent for my company. Pro act belongs to Grinstead brother

mike murphy    
Alabama  |  September, 12, 2012 at 11:28 AM

The greatest injustice in this case is that the banruptcy judge and administration allowed three former owners to take their business back over the day after filing without any payment or consideration. These customer lists and computer programs to drive sales were valuable assets that belonged to the corporation and their sale would have gone a long way to paying employees and vendors. Judge Mitchell should be ashamed of how this was handled.

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