HAMBURG Oct 13 Suedzucker, Europe's
largest sugar refiner, on Thursday said rising sugar prices
helped it post an 81 percent jump in first-half net profit at
155 million euros ($173.6 million).
Suedzucker had made an advance partial release of its
half-year results on Sept. 22 when it raised its full-year
earnings forecast as higher sugar prices fuelled a strong
increase in second-quarter earnings.
The company on Thursday confirmed it expected group
operating profit in its 2016/17 financial year starting in March
to reach 340 million to 390 million euros from 241 million euros
in the previous year.
First-half operating profit in its core sugar sector rose to
40 million euros from a loss of 13 million euros in the previous
year, Suedzucker said.
The 2016 sugar harvest processing campaign began in
September, it said, adding that indications for this year's
sugar beet harvest were positive.
"Suedzucker Group expects an above average beet yield of
just under 76 tonnes per hectare (previous year: 69) thanks to
heavy rainfall in June and July," it said. "Sugar yield will
come in at the average level of the past five years."
Raw sugar futures rose to their highest in more than 4 years
on Oct. 5, as lowered expectations for Indian production and a
slackening cane processing in Brazil lent support to talk of a
potential world sugar supply deficit.
Lower costs of grains and other raw materials for bioethanol
production were also assisting green fuel unit CropEnergies
, Suedzucker said.
($1 = 0.8928 euros)
(Reporting By Michael Hogan, editing by)