Carr’s Group has reported a small 0.5% rise in operating profit to £9.6m for the six months ended 27 February 2016, despite a 9.4% plunge in revenue to £189.1m.
Profit before tax was also down 0.9% to £10.5m, which the milling, fuel and engineering firm blamed on commodity price movements.
Underlying sales volumes in the company’s food division grew 0.4%, which Carr’s said was in spite of changes in the consumer market, such as the decline in consumption of the traditional white loaf.
Despite acknowledging the “significant operational impact” of last December’s floods on its Lancaster feed mill and a major customer of its Cumbrian flour mill, it insisted there had been no adverse financial impact as a result.
Tim Davies, chief executive officer at Carr’s Group, said: “The group is operating in challenging markets. However, our international presence and diversity has provided a robust H1 performance. Trading in the second half is as anticipated and we remain on track to meet the full-year expectations of the board.
“The UK agricultural market has suffered from the depressed farmgate milk and livestock prices and we expect this to continue through 2016 and 2017, which will directly adversely impact our UK farm customers.”