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May 23 British pork and poultry supplier
Cranswick Plc said it expects to spend 50 percent more
this year as it boosts investments in its meat processing plants
to counter a surge in input prices.
Cranswick, which processes and supplies fresh pork, premium
bacon and sausages, as well as cooked meats, posted a 17.2
percent increase in full-year profit on Tuesday as exports
The company expects to spend up to 70 million pounds ($90
million) in its fiscal year ending March 2018, Chief Executive
Adam Couch told Reuters. That represents a near 49 percent jump
from a year earlier.
Couch also said the company continued to eye acquisition
Cranswick, founded by Yorkshire pig farmers in the 1970s to
make pig feed, bolstered its chicken business with two
acquisitions over the past three years.
The company bought cooked-chicken specialist Benson Park in
October 2014 and added Crown Chicken to its basket in April last
The company's poultry business, which represents 11 percent
of the group's total revenue, rose 17.7 percent on a
like-for-like basis in the year ended March 31.
Cranswick's shares were up about 2 percent at 2,869 pence by
11:33 GMT on the London Stock Exchange.
The company, which has a strong presence in the pork export
market of China, recorded a 38.4 percent increase in total
export revenue for the year ended March 31, with its Far Eastern
markets surging 49.3 percent.
Exports to China - the country consumes about 55 million
tonnes of pork a year, or half of the global total - remained
strong, helped by robust demand, particularly from the Shanghai
region, Couch said.
Apart from China, Cranswick's fastest-growing market, the
company sells in New Zealand and the United States.
The results come at a time when UK pig prices have soared.
UK pig prices jumped 34 percent during the year ended March,
compared with a 15 percent decline a year earlier, the company
"Cranswick continues to exceed our growth expectations via
strong conversion of capex to sales and tight operational
management," Davy Research analyst Roland French said.
Revenue from continuing operations rose 22.5 percent in the
year ended March 31, its most in at least a decade, to 1.25
Full-year adjusted pretax profit rose to 75.5 million pounds
($1 = 0.7706 pounds)
(Reporting by Rahul B and Tenzin Pema in Bengaluru; Editing by
Gopakumar Warrier and Sriraj Kalluvila)