bacon meat Cranswick

Cranswick has shrugged off rising input prices to post improved year-on-year revenue figures for the three months to 31 December.

In a trading statement to the City published today (2 February), the pork processor said trading for its third quarter was “in line with the board’s expectations”.

Total and underlying revenue was “well ahead of the prior year”, underpinned by strong volume growth and supported, as anticipated, “by a robust performance over the key Christmas trading period”.

AHDB Pork’s standard UK pig price rose from 119.7p/kg on 2 January 2016 to 149.2p/kg almost 12 months later on 31 December 2016. But despite facing this increase in pork prices, Cranswick said efficiency improvements, internal pig production and “constructive pricing discussions with customers”, had helped it to partially mitigate the impact of inflation.

Meanwhile, export sales also continued to grow strongly, it added, with Far East revenues well ahead of the same quarter last year, reflecting both ongoing demand from the region and increased output from the group’s two primary processing facilities.

Crown Chicken, which was acquired on 8 April 2016, continued to contribute strongly during the period, the processor added. The business was being integrated successfully and “forging strong links” with the group’s premium cooked poultry and pig farming operations.

“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 is confident in both the prospects for the remainder of the current financial year and the continued long-term success and development of the business,” the update said.

The company’s next scheduled comment on trading will be its preliminary results announcement on 23 May.