In all, Co Down firm, J Murray & Son Ltd was fined £100,000 plus £10,000 costs, for health and safety failings which led to the unlawful death of 47-year-old employee Norman Porter on 28 February 2012.
A similar charge against 69-year-old company director James Daniel Murray, also of Burn Road in Ballygowan, was not proceeded with following his guilty plea on behalf of his animal feed mixing company.
However, in an effort to safeguard the 16 company jobs, Downpatrick Crown Court has allowed the firm to pay the monies in annual instalments of £20,000.
On Tuesday Mr Justice Weir, sitting in Belfast's Laganside Courthouse, said that the totally preventable and foreseeable death of Mr Porter was both 'terrible and dreadful', and that he wanted to "re-emphasise that neither this nor any fine can, nor is it intended, to value the deceased's life in money".
However, the judge said while the fine "will do little to assuage" the family's deep sense of loss at his "needless death", it was the only penalty open to "mark the court's strong disapproval" of the company's gross and thoughtless negligent which resulted in the perfectly foreseeable dreadful injuries and death of Mr Porter.
The joint police and Health and Safety Executive investigation into the fatal incident, revealed that for three years, the blending machine, in which Mr Porter was mangled, had been operated without safety guards.
They were removed to allow raw ingredients to be added more easily, but at the same time, exposing the dangerous mixing blades of the machine.
Mr Justice Weir, in his judgement said that the machine could have been "safely and cheaply modified to render it safe", and while no one witnessed the accident, "it was plainly entirely foreseeable, indeed obvious, that a person either deliberately, or accidently entering the danger zone of the machine, would meet with serious injury or death".
There can be no question but that this was an obvious and gross breach of the duty of care owed by the company to the deceased.
Mr Justice Weir
He also told the company director: "That death was entirely attributable to the negligent behaviour of the company at its highest level of direction."
That breach, added the judge, "ought to have been plainly obvious to Mr Murray had he given them a moment's thought".
Defence QC Liam McCollum told an earlier hearing that the simple fact of the matter was that Murray never saw the machine, which he himself also operated, as a potential danger and the possible consequences for his own and others' safety were overlooked.
However, Mr Justice Weir dismissed the 'submission' out of hand, adding that Mr Murray, "could not conceivably have been unaware of its dangers.
"I conclude rather that he was well aware of the danger...and deliberately turned a blind eye to it," said Mr Justice Weir.
Following the hearing, Kevin Campbell, an Inspector with HSENI's Major Investigation Team said: "This case highlights the importance of proper management of health and safety in the workplace. Management need to ensure that all aspects of their work are adequately addressed, with appropriate measures put in place where necessary.
"The removal of safety guards from the machine and the continued use of the machine ultimately led to the death of Norman Porter. The company allowed the use of the unsafe machine.
"I strongly urge that all levels of management actively ensure that health and safety within their workplace is taken seriously to prevent another worker from needlessly losing his or her life."
A police spokesperson said that Mr Porter had "lost his life as a result of this tragic incident and today's sentencing sends a clear message to those who flout the law".
They added: "This conviction should be a stark reminder to all that legislation is there for a reason and of the subsequent consequences if it is not adhered to."
The court had heard that Mr Porter, who had only been working with company for eight weeks, had been a life-long friend of Murray and his family.
Prosecution QC Ciaran Murphy revealed that Mr Porter, who apparently had either fallen, or was dragged, having caught his clothing, into the animal feed mixing machine, was found "entangled" within its blades, and that he had suffered "an horrific death".
Although the company have been given up to 2017, beginning 1 December next, to pay the fine, Mr Justice Weir, ruled that any default in the annual payment will result in the remaining balance of the fine immediately becoming "due and payable".
In addition the judge ordered the company to pay costs of the prosecution, totalling £10,450, to be paid by June next year.
Despite Tuesday's judgement, not all members of the family are happy with the outcome.
Speaking on behalf of the "paternal side of the Porter family", his brother Brian said they had been left "with many unanswered questions that are important to us as a family on the loss of Norman's precious life".
He added they "expected nothing" from the police and courts, and got nothing concerning the "tragic accident caused totally by poor health and safety procedures on their work premises by JM Murray and Son".