Egg giant Skea's profits fall by £1m but turnover rises
One of Northern Ireland's biggest egg producers has seen its pre-tax profits drop by almost £1m, according to fresh company accounts.
Skea Egg Farms Ltd, which is based in Pomeroy, Co Tyrone, is a family-run business that has been operating since the Seventies.
In its latest set of accounts for the financial year ending in December 2016, the company, trading as Skea Eggs, showed a pre-tax profit of £2.9m.
Despite an increase in turnover compared to the previous year's accounts, the pre-tax profit had fallen by more than 23%.
That was down from £3.9m in 2015.
The company posted turnover in 2015 of £61.7m which rose in 2016 to £63.3m.
However, the cost of sales increased from £54.9m in 2015 to £57.3m in 2016.
Skea Egg Farms Ltd is currently run by the company founder and managing director Matthew Hayes.
Today, the company processes and packs eggs from 1.6 million hens.
Skea Egg Farms Ltd employs 112 people and had employee costs totalling £2.3m in 2016 which included wages, social security costs and pensions.
Skea Eggs supplies most of the main UK supermarkets, including Asda, Co-op, Marks and Spencer, Sainsbury's and Tesco.
In 2014, Skea Eggs signed a new supply deal with Sainsbury's to supply over 190 million eggs to Sainbury's 379 stories across the UK every year.
One of the company's more recognisable products is the 'Big 10' packs retailing under the Skea Eggs branding.
However, it also packs eggs under home branding for the supermarkets.
According to its latest accounts, Skea Egg Farms Ltd said it had "enjoyed another successful year with the company's recent investment in new equipment continuing to provide improved effectiveness".
It also said "further sales growth was achieved and the company will continue to seek news sales opportunities in the coming year".
Skea Eggs supplies around eight million free range, organic, barn and colony eggs to supermarkets in the UK and Ireland every week.
While the company did not want to comment on the accounts it did reiterate that significant investment in new technology and equipment would continue to make Skea Eggs a very efficient and modern business.
Skea Eggs produces a number of different sizes of standard eggs as well as a healthy range of free range eggs.
Tapping into increased demand from customers looking for free range eggs, Skea Eggs produces The Good Egg mixed weight pack.
These free range eggs are enriched with Omega 3.
A number of research projects into free range eggs shows that Omega-3s, can boost heart health, maintain healthy eyes and brain function.