No slip-ups as Fyffes' profits ripen
Fyffes has increased its earnings target after healthy sales in the first half of the year.
The fruit business saw revenues rise by 6% to €585.4m (£492.8m) between January and June following growth in banana and melon sales and price inflation in pineapples.
Pre-tax profit increased by 1% to €22.2m (£18.6m).
"Having achieved a significant step up in profits in 2012, Fyffes is pleased to have grown its business further and consolidated its earnings at this higher level.
"Trading conditions have remained positive in the early months of the second half," said chairman David McCann.
Anticipated full-year earnings before tax, interest and amortisation have been moved up to the €29-34m (£24-£28m) range.
The company said trading conditions were more difficult in the early months of the year in the banana category, one of its most important, due to extended winter weather in Europe and excess market volumes.
But clearing up supply issues helped European conditions to improve over the summer months.
Fyffes said a multi-year trend has emerged whereby fruit costs are rising annually.
It said it is pursuing higher selling prices in all markets to deal with higher costs and adverse exchange rates.
The firm is proposing an interim dividend of 0.68cents (57p) per share, a 4.6% increase.