French vegetable oil producer Cereol, recently taken over by the world's largest oilseed processor Bunge, reported a 7.6 per cent drop in net sales for the first nine months of 2002 in comparison to the previous year.
Net sales reached €3,578.2 million and consolidated operating profit €115.3 million, a decrease of 17.6 per cent from last year. At a constant perimeter, operating income was up 5.3 per cent from 2001.
Cereol warned that comparison of key figures was made difficult because of the perimeter changes in the years 2001 and 2002, in particular the exit of Koipe and Carapelli and the entry of the remaining 49 per cent of Oleina and 50 per cent of CanAmera, both now owned by Cereol.
On 15 October 2002, Italian energy company Edison completed its sale of 54.69 per cent of the shares of Cereol to Bunge. The US oilseed processor has since made a tender offer for the remaining shares.
According to Cereol, prospects for the last quarter of 2002 remain satisfactory, although, the company warned, operating results for the year 2002 are not expected to be as high as those achieved in the preceding year.