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Sunday 4 December 2016

Kerry reports 3.2% growth in business volumes

Published 02/11/2016 | 09:02

Stan Mc Carthy Chief Executive of Kerry Group.
Stan Mc Carthy Chief Executive of Kerry Group.

Kerry has reported a 3.2pc growth in business volumes, driven by strong performances in its Taste and Nutrition and Consumer Foods divisions.

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Despite weak global markets, currency volatility and geopolitical issues in some regions, Kerry's interim results report that business volumes increased by 3.2pc. It also said that pricing declined by 2.2pc against a background of 4.5pc lower raw material costs. while net debt at the end of the period stood at €1.4 billion compared to €1.7 billion at year-end 2015.

Reported revenues increased by 0.4pc, reflecting the business volume growth, lower pricing, an adverse currency translation impact of 4.5pc, adverse currency transaction impact of 0.3pc, and the effect of acquisitions net of disposals of 4.2pc.

The Group's trading profit margin increased by 70 basis points, which it says reflects a 70 basis points improvement in trading margin in Taste & Nutrition, a 30 basis points improvement in Kerry Foods’ margin and reduced spend on the Kerryconnect Programme.

It also predicted that growth in adjusted earnings per share in 2016 would be towards the middle to lower end of the 6-10pc range of 320 to 332 cent per share.

Brexit

Despite Brexit and the uncertainty around the future of the UK as a trading partner for Ireland and the EU, Kerry said its offerings in the UK continued to perform well.

At home, the food giant said that ‘Dairygold’ maintained a solid brand performance, assisted by new product launches. ‘Charleville’ performed well in the cheese sector. ‘Fire and Smoke’ branded meat products achieved good growth with the successful launch of a ‘food-to-go’ snacking pots range and new retail listings in the UK market.

Consumer Trends

Consumer trends, it says, continue to reflect widening preference for health and wellness offerings, clean-label solutions, organic lines and convenient products.

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Meanwhile, snacking and wellness trends in the Taste and Nutrition division drove innovation in the dairy and meat retail / convenience sectors.

Regions

The Americas region delivered 3.6pc volume growth, as health and wellness trends continue to drive sales in North American markets.

Red Arrow Products, acquired in December 2015, assisted growth in the meat and savoury product sectors, it said.

In the pharmaceutical sector, it reported  further progress through cell nutrition applications. Wellmune, which was acquired in September 2015, delivered strong growth in broader nutritional applications, it said.

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