British American Tobacco has recorded bumper rises in sales and profits for the past six months despite a slight dip in organic volumes over the period.

Sales rose 24% at the tobacco giant, owner of brands including Lucky Strike and Dunhill, to £6.78bn, while operating profits were up 22% to  £2.11bn.

As a result of acquisitions, total volumes rose by 5% – but would have fallen by 2% without earlier deals for Denmark’s ST and Turkish group Tekel.

“Despite difficult economic and trading conditions in many countries, the continued market share growth from our Global Drive Brands, our ability to innovate and our broad geographic spread should continue to stand us in very good stead,” said group chairman Jan du Plessis.

“These half-yearly results give us confidence that we are very much on track to deliver another year of strong earnings growth.”