US grocery retailer Supervalu has reported a 33% increase in its net profits to $64.9m for its third quarter to 4 December 2004, compared to $48.6m the year before.

Sales for the quarter totalled $2.4bn, flat with the previous year.

Comparable same store sales for the quarter saw a decline of 0.4%, which reflected the weak retail environment leading up to Christmas.

Total sales reached $4.6bn compared to the previous year’s $4.7bn.

In a statement the company said it expects consumer spending to continue to be pressured by food inflation and higher fuel prices in 2005,