The shares of dried fruit maker Murray River Organics (ASX:MRG) shares fell again this morning as its forecast EBITDA loss blew out from $1m-$3m to $5m-$8m.

Less than three weeks ago it reported a 27 per cent year-on-year increase in exports.

But this morning the company revealed its turnaround plan was taking longer than expected. It blamed higher water costs (from $600 per mega litre to over $950 per mega litre), tougher growing conditions and delays in product launches.

At the company’s AGM, chairman Andrew Monk noted the Merbein football club (which it sponsors) which went from wooden spooners to 6th on the ladder and said this was,”paralleling the progress made in MRG’s turnaround”.

Shareholders, which either didn’t agree or thought 6th spot was not high enough, sent Murray River shares down 12 per cent.


Despite the setback, Murray River told shareholders at its AGM this morning that it was still on track.

Among its goals was a target of $300m in revenue within five years and to be cash flow positive from its operations within three financial years.

Murray River also said crops for the upcoming 2020 harvest were looking promising.

“We recognise the turnaround in our farms will be a slower process as our vines return to good health,” Monk said.

“The recent weather and lack of water has been disappointing but as with any agricultural asset, we recognise this is a fundamental risk – we must and will continue to mitigate.”

Read More:

Food & Ag: It looks like the sun is finally starting to shine for Murray River Organics


In other ASX food and ag news today:

Wiseway Group (ASX:WWG) has this morning been accredited to export fruit to China. The Department of Agriculture and Water Resources has given Wiseway’s facilities in Sydney and Melbourne the all clear. Wiseway also signed on China Marketing Solutions to export produce. China Marketing Solutions expects to ship over 2,500 tonnes of fruit to China this year.