M and J Haulage, a major sugar beet haulage contractor, has been placed into administration prompting concerns among growers that they’ll struggle to find another company to harvest and deliver the crop.

Administrators at KPMG were appointed to the Snelland, Lincs-based haulier on 12 October and they are now exploring whether to sell the business and assets.

M and J Haulage employs 24 people and operates as an agricultural contracting business, specialising in the cultivation of sugar beet and other arable crops.

The company grows its own crops whilst also providing contract farming and haulage services to other customers in the East Midlands.

It has an O-licence authorising more than 30 HGVs and 30 trailers out of six depots in the Lincolnshire region.

KPMG partner Chris Pole said: “The company had recently seen a decline in its order book, which led to significant pressure on its cashflow.

“Over the coming days, we will be assessing options for the business, including the possibility of resuming operations, while we explore a sale of the business and its assets.”

Representation body NFU Sugar said it had organised a meeting with growers who were relying on the haulier and described the company as “pioneers”.

NFU Sugar chairman Michael Sly said: “M and J’s demise not only creates huge challenges for growers, who may now struggle to find a replacement contractor to harvest and deliver their beet, but also brings into question the effectiveness of the Industry Harvest and Haulage Scheme and its ability to deliver a sustainable supply chain from field to factory.

“We have noted British Sugar’s assertion that contingency plans are in place for such instances, and that they do not anticipate any significant delays due to the loss of M and J Haulage.

"NFU Sugar urges British Sugar to share their plans with growers as soon as possible.”