27 Feb 2020

Record prices lift New Zealand King Salmon net profit nearly 38pc

10:41 am on 27 February 2020

New Zealand King Salmon has had a better-than-expected first half, driven by record prices for its fish products.

New Zealand King Salmon farm

New Zealand King Salmon farm Photo: Supplied / New Zealand King Salmon

The Marlborough-based salmon farmer's net profit rose nearly 38 percent to $20.8 million in the six months to December, with the average sale price up 6.6 percent.

However, revenue of $84.2m was down slightly from $87.7m the year earlier, as climate change continued to affect the size of its harvest.

Chief executive Grant Rosewarne said sales volumes were down 10 percent, with no expectation of volume growth in the near future.

"As we aren't forecasting significant volume growth until 2022, we're aiming to use every part of our salmon to create premium products," he said, adding that the launch of its pet food brand in China was successful.

"We have had our challenges in previous summers, and this year, we have put everything in place for our sea farm operations to be ready for the summer.

"We're also optimistic that our longer-term growth plans are progressing well, with our pending application to commence open ocean farming, at a site named Blue Endeavour, 7km north of Cape Lambert in the Cook Strait."

He expected the application to be completed by the end of the year, with the first harvest in 2023 if it was approved.

The company said it was on track to meet its full year underlying profit guidance of between $25m and $28.5m.