HMRC’s renewed clampdown on tobacco duty fraud has contributed to a 4% sales boost at AG Parfett & Sons.

Cigarettes and tobacco has grown faster than any other area, said company secretary David Grimes. “To some extent this is only the return of legitimate business that has been diverted to criminal activity and duty free,” he said.

But Parfetts’ alcohol business was still “very considerably affected” by duty fraud, he added, and new measures introduced in May to allow Customs officers to impose fines on any business that can’t prove duty and VAT have been paid on the products it handles.

Accounts filed at Companies House for the year to June 2010 revealed pre-tax profits up 21% to £2.8m on turnover up 4% to £289.1m. “We expected 2009 to be a difficult year, but ­actually the tough conditions really kicked in this year, so we’ll be doing very well if we can replicate those results next year,” said MD Steve Parfett.

During the year trading director Bill Pace retired and was replaced by Greg Suszczenia. Parfett’s, which is Landmark Wholesale’s biggest member, also invested in improvements to its Stockport depot.