24 Oct 2009

$43.6m profit reported by Silver Fern Farms

10:50 am on 24 October 2009

Silver Fern Farms has reported a higher annual profit due to one-off gains from a settlement with PGG Wrightson. However, no dividend will be paid amid what it calls a tough economic environment.

The meat processor and exporter made a profit of $43.6 million in the year to the end of August, an increase of 6% on the previous year.

But the company expects the high New Zealand dollar will have a detrimental effect on its bottom line this year, if it remains strong.

Excluding one-off items and a $37 million gain from the settlement with PGG Wrightson, it made an operating profit of just over $5 million.

Debt was reduced by almost $60 million during the year.

Chairman Eoin Garden says shareholders should be pleased with the result in what he describes as a tough economic environment, characterised by a highly volatile New Zealand dollar.

Given this, he says, the company will not be pay a dividend this year.