Dairy Crest boosted by growth in cheese and spreads

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New Delhi, November 08, 2018: The group’s adjusted pre-tax profit increased by 13% to £22.7m in the six-month period.

Cathedral City saw volumes fall by 3% after prices were increased, however, this resulted in revenues growing by 7%. The group said volumes are already improving in the second half of the year as promotional activity picks up and new products are rolled out.

Dairy Crest has developed a number of products to benefit from the healthy eating and snacking trends, including a Caramelised Onion and a Sweet Chilli variant of the Cathedral City snack bar launched in October.

It also unveiled a Cathedral City Lactose Free range and revamped its Cathedral City Kids Snacking range.

Meanwhile, Clover volumes grew by 8% and revenue by 9% over the six month period. Building on this success, Dairy Crest launched Clover Light with no artificial ingredients in August 2018. In addition, Vitalite grew both volumes and revenue by more than 40% in the period according to talkingretail.com.

The group reported that Country Life butter volumes fell by 16% over the period, while revenue reduced by 4%. However, Dairy Crest expects an improved performance in the second half of the year, supported by an on-pack promotion with English Heritage.

Sales volumes and revenue of Frylight were down by about 20% for the six month period, as the summer heatwave led to consumers frying less, Dairy Crest said. However, the group said Frylight sales are weighted towards the second half of the year, particularly the fourth quarter, and it expects Frylight to return to year-on-year growth in the second half.

Mark Allen, chief executive of Dairy Crest, said: “We have delivered a good first half performance driven by our two largest brands, Cathedral City and Clover.

“Innovation continues to shape the business and we have recently launched exciting new products in all of our categories. We understand the importance of staying ahead of the market and ensuring we are meeting consumers’ needs. Food provenance, health and wellbeing are core themes which we will continue to focus on.”

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