Tate & Lyle has warned that its sugars business will report a small half-year loss.

The business had experienced a "substantial reduction" in the performance of sugar trading which, after a particularly difficult August, was now forecasting a small loss for the half-year against a profit of £15m last year, T&L said in a trading update.

The translation impact of the weak US dollar would also reduce first-half pre-tax profit by an estimated £12m, it added.

Although its Ingredients Europe businesses had performed “satisfactorily” in the first-half of the year, significantly higher corn costs in Europe, if sustained, would have an increasingly severe effect on profitability, T&L also warned.

“The board views the near term outlook with caution,” T&L said.