Premier Foods’ Hovis division saw positive growth in branded bakery last year, but retailer brand bakery and milling sales fell throughout 2009.
Across its Grocery, Hovis and Chilled divisions, Premier Foods said it expects to report “encouraging branded sales growth” of 6.4% in its trading update for the year ending 31 December 2009.
Its Hovis division has seen total sales, across branded bakery, retailer brand bakery and milling, reach £742m – down 3.7% on the full-year figures for 2008. However, branded bakery sales saw positive sales growth of 13.3% YOY to £370m.
Sales of retailer brand bakery fell by 15.7% YOY to £179m, and 25.2% in the fourth quarter. Milling revenue also fell by 16.7% YOY to £193m, and was down 6.1% in the fourth quarter of 2009.
The firm put the fall in retailer brand bread down to customers switching to branded loaves. “We also exited some contracts in Q3 of 2009 to allow for the continued branded growth, and the lower own-label volumes were more than compensated for by the growth in branded bakery volumes,” read the statement.
According to data from IRI Infoscan, Hovis’ market share increased by 3% in the 52 weeks to 26 December to 25.9%.
Sales in its Chilled division, which includes its cake businesses, saw overall sales growth of 4.1% for the full year, with growth driven by new contracts and the launch of new branded products, such as Mr Kipling Christmas puddings and Loyd Grossman pizzas.