Washington, D.C.—The Natural Products Association (NPA) filed for bankruptcy protection on Monday, according to Reuters, citing six straight years of losses and a costly arbitration with former chief financial officer Brent Weickert, who holds the largest unsecured claim of a disputed $780,000 arbitration award.
According to Reuters, CEO Daniel Fabricant, Ph.D., said in the bankruptcy filing that the Chapter 11 case will provide a “breathing spell” for NPA to focus on advocacy and adding members.
The bankruptcy was filed in the Wilmington, Delaware bankruptcy court.
The full statement from the NPA on financial restructuring follows:
After exploring a number of alternatives, the Board of Directors of the Natural Products Association (NPA) has made the strategic decision to file a voluntary petition under Chapter 11 of the United States Bankruptcy Code in the United States Bankruptcy Court for the District of Delaware in order to effectuate a financial restructuring of the organization. Our Board concluded that this was the best and most expeditious way to proceed and to ensure that NPA goes forward as a stronger and more financially sound organization.
The filing is expected to have no impact on day to day operations and the important work the NPA pursues on behalf of its over 1,000 members. We are proud to be the oldest and largest non-profit dedicated to the natural products industry and it will be business as usual as we proceed through the financial restructuring, with no changes to our activities, initiatives or interaction with members and government officials.
The decision to financially restructure through a Chapter 11 filing was driven largely by recent operational deficits at the NPA and the organization’s involvement in an arbitration action. The NPA expects to quickly emerge from this process and continue to aggressively advocate on behalf of the retailers, manufacturers, wholesalers and distributors it represents across the food, dietary supplement and health/beauty aid sectors.
NPA had a successful first day in court and is looking forward to moving quickly through the financial restructuring process. Going forward it will be business as usual as we focus on the needs of our members and advocating for the interests of the Natural Products sector.