Max Brenner, The Fancy Choccie Mainstay, Melts Into Voluntary Administration

Max Brenner, the v. popular and quite fancy choccie chain, has entered voluntary administration – despite the fact chocolate remains one of the only pure and good things left on this accursed planet.

The Sydney Morning Herald reports Max Brenner, which boasts 37 stores around the nation, appointed an administrator on Sunday to sort out the financial situation at the flagging business.

The good news is the stores will continue to dole out treats for the foreseeable future. The bad news is that future is not, uh, that foreseeable.

McGrathNicol, the administrator, hasn’t been drawn on what kind of debts the business has. That said, the SMH pointed to an Australian Financial Review piece from last year, which cited sources who claimed the chain owed $50 million to local lenders.

It’s just the latest in a growing string of upmarket food purveyors facing financial strain in a changing Australian market.

There was Jamie’s Italian, the chain tied to Jamie Oliver, which fell apart earlier this year; Zumbo, the chain of patisseries linked to celeb croquembouche lord Adriano Zumbo, was also recently placed into administration.

As afternoon-treat-havers wait with bated breath to see what becomes of Max Brenner’s two-decade-old Australian enterprise, let us hope that someone, somewhere, will continue coating damn near anything in chocolate.