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Sales rise to £48m at Co Armagh bakery, but profits suffer a dip

By John Mulgrew

A Co Armagh food firm has seen sales rising to almost £50m, but warned that the market remains "highly competitive" with "tight margins".

Evron Foods, which has its headquarters in Craigavon, saw turnover rising from £45.4m to £47.7m in the year to August 31, 2016.

But pre-tax profits have fallen during the same period by a third, from £884,000 to £590,000.

The firm makes and sells chilled and frozen bakery products for retail, food service, wholesale and the sandwich manufacturing market.

The company, which has been going for more than three decades, operates another bakery in Pontypool, Wales.

In the strategic report in the latest accounts for Evron Foods Ltd, the company said: "The group is once again trading profitably, and the directors are confident that the group will report a profitable position for 2017.

"They consider that the group is well-placed to continue to improve both market share and product range.

"Long-term growth prospects are also strong as the group is committed to retaining high quality employees, and is well-positioned to benefit from an economic recovery", due to capital investment, spending on research and development and "continuing commitment to excellence".

"As for many businesses of this size, the consumer environment in which the group operates continues to be challenging.

"The market in the UK is highly competitive, and margins continue to be tight."

Speaking about the risks posed to the company, it said they include changes in debt market prices, credit, liquidity and interest rates.

And while it said the majority of its sales and revenue is in sterling "the group is exposed to some foreign exchange risk in the normal course of business, principally on sales in euros".

On its website, the company said that "with over 33 years of unique knowledge and experience we are recognised as one of the leading manufacturers" within the chilled and frozen bread sectors.

In its accounts, the company said turnover from overseas sales was around 22%.

That was down slightly from the year before.

In the last year the company, has increased staff numbers from 364 to 395.

Some of its products include baguettes, rolls, loaves and flatbreads. It also produces ready-made garlic bread.

Evron Foods' customers include supermarkets such as Waitrose, Sainsbury's and Asda.

Aside from sales to the Republic and the rest of the UK, it also exports across Europe, as well as to the Middle East.

The company is headed by director Morris Evans.

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