(Adds CEO comments, details)
May 11 (Reuters) - Australia’s largest listed grain handler GrainCorp Ltd said on Thursday its half-year underlying profit more than tripled and reaffirmed its full-year forecast, as a record wheat crop underpinned revenue growth.
GrainCorp said its underlying net profit for the six months ended March 31 came in at A$100.1 million ($73.6 million), up from A$32.2 million last year.
The grain handler reaffirmed its full-year underlying net profit forecast of A$130 million to A$160 million.
Revenue rose during the first half to A$2.46 billion from A$2.07 billion last year.
GrainCorp was aided by record Australian wheat production during the 2016/17 season, supporting the company’s storage and handling segment as well as its trading arm, which accounts for nearly 60 percent of the group’s revenues.
“Our storage and logistics team performed very well in response to the significant challenges of the record harvest and compressed export program,” GrainCorp chief executive Mark Palmquist said in a statement.
The 2016/17 season’s wheat output of 35.13 million tonnes was Australia’s largest-ever, surpassing a previous record set in the 2011/12 season.
Graincorp’s annual profit dipped in 2016 due to restructuring costs and smaller grain production. ($1 = 1.3600 Australian dollars) (Reporting By Rushil Dutta; Editing by Richard Pullin)