Christmas puddings and festive biscuits helped boost 2 Sisters Food Group’s second-quarter results for the 13 weeks to 26 January 2013.

Total sales were up 9.6% from £571.8m to £626.5m, announced Boparan Holdings, the holding company for 2 Sisters, this week.

Like-for-like sales increased 5.4% to £597.4m, while operating profit rose £0.4m to £26.1m.

The company said Christmas business was solid, but that it was driven by higher promotional activity.

Within its branded arm, like-for-like sales were up 6.2%. But while the recovery of its frozen business progressed well, this was offset by a tough biscuit market, which reflected the consumer trend for trading into own-label, as well as higher promotional activity, said the firm.

While its seasonal biscuit business managed to deliver “on plan”, the firm said Fox’s Biscuits’ new managing director Colin Smith was now in place to drive the Fox’s biscuit brand forward.

Ranjit Singh, chief executive, 2 Sisters Food Group, said: “We delivered a solid performance in Q2, despite the tough and competitive market conditions.

“Every one of our 18,000 colleagues helped to ensure our seasonal Christmas business – which served meal occasions, including ready meal accompaniments, festive sandwiches, Christmas biscuits and Christmas puddings – delivered on plan for our customers.”