Cranswick ‘in robust position’

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YORKSHIRE-based food producer Cranswick today revealed that trading in the current financial year has been in line with the board’s expectations.

Revenue in the three months to June 30 2014 was five per cent ahead of the same period last year, reflecting continued growth across most product categories. Operating margin in the first quarter was similar to that achieved in the previous financial year as a whole.

The group has invested further in its asset base to increase capacity and improve efficiency. Work to extend the Delico cooked meats facility in Milton Keynes is, as planned, nearing completion.

The statement added: “The project will provide more capacity to meet anticipated sales growth and the investment in advanced cooking and slicing technology will deliver increased throughput and enhanced yields. A major upgrade to the chilling system at the Norfolk primary processing facility will deliver similar benefits.”

Net debt stood at £33m at June 30 2014, £22m lower than the same point last year and compared with £17m at March 31 2014. The increase during the quarter reflects the usual seasonal uplift in working capital and the group’s on-going capital investment programme, the statement said.

The statement said: “The group is in a sound financial position, with committed, unsecured facilities of £120m which provide generous headroom going forward.”

Commenting on outlook, the statement said: “With experienced management at all levels of the group, a strong range of products, a well invested asset base and a robust financial position, the board remains confident in the continued long term success and development of the business.”