Buying rather than selling is top of the agenda for Associated British Foods, said chief executive Peter Jackson, posting full year profits for the Twinings tea to Kingsmill bread group. Selling or floating discount clothing chain Primark was not on the cards, said Jackson: "We're in more of an acquiring mode than a selling mode." Although ABF has almost £1bn in the bank, discussions in recent weeks have not borne fruit. A sudden purchase is unlikely, he added. "I wouldn't be surprised if in 26 weeks we still hadn't made a transforming acquisition." Operating profits were up 4% to £340m on sales up 2% to £4.4bn, while pretax profits slipped 1.5% to £383m before a £130m restructuring charge relating to shedding a number of operations. West LB Panmure analyst John Elston said the trading profit was impressive in a difficult climate. But there was no obvious name at the top of the group's shopping list. "ABF is looking to beef up the ingredients part of the business. But other bolt on acquisitions right across the group's operations are likely." {{NEWS }}