Milk and Cheese giant Dairy Crest says that a "strong cash generation period" has been ignited in the company by a good performance from all leading brands in the market share.
The spreads business' has seen a high performance which has resulted in the company's profit before tax increasing to 12 per cent, which ammounts to a £5 million profit increase since 2002.
Today's results have shown that brands such as Cathedral City, Frrijj and Yoplait, which have witnessed an increased market share with double digit volume growth are key brands within the company.
The company has said that the closure of the butter and powder facility in Chard, Somerset, and the sale of the chilled juice business in September this year, has enabled them to increase its profits. Drummond Hall, chief executive of Dairy Crest said that the group is somewhat confident of achieving its goals for the full year.
"On the back of a strong performance by our portfolio of brands we have made an encouraging start to the year with first half results in line with market expectations. Our enlarged spreads business, now Dairy Crest's biggest profit centre, performed strongly and all of our leading brands grew market share, with most achieving double digit volume growth. We expect performance for the full year, including the benefit of St Ivel Spreads, to show continuing good progress", Hall said.
The group's adjusted earnings per share has increased nine per cent to 20.6 pence in comparison to the 2002 figure of just 18.9 pence. Its interim dividend is up by 8 per cent which lands it at 5.5 pence, compared to 5.1 pence in 2002.
Hall said that the Dairy Crest's increased profits have in part come from mass advertising of Clover and Utterly Butterly. The summer sales of these products increased by 15 per cent.