Campbell Soup said although its fourth quarter marketing spend rose 17% and it invested in new technology the US group posted a 5.8% rise in net income.

The soups, sauces and foods group said income to July 28 was $55m compared to $52m last year, but problems at its Australian manufacturing unit saw earnings fall from $62m to $59m. Sales rose 5% to $1.2bn, helped by acquisitions.

Campbell is two years into a three-year restructuring plan to boost its core US soup business.

President and chief executive Douglas Conant said: “It's important to note that we are only now realizing the first of many planned technology-driven product and package improvements in condensed soup.”

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