In its interim results for the six months to 30 September, it reported a 7.1% year-on-year growth in revenue while operating profit for the period grew 5.6%.
The business’ total export revenue was up 65%, with Far East export revenue up 94% on the same period in 2018.
Cranswick chief executive officer Adam Couch said: “We have made a positive start to the year with reported revenue growth of 7.1% underpinned by a very strong performance in our Far East export markets. The UK market remains highly competitive.
“We have again invested at record levels across our asset base to position the business for future growth. The Katsouris Brothers business, acquired in July, has been integrated successfully and is performing in line with our expectations.”
Highlights for the business during the six months included the commissioning of its £75m primary poultry processing facility in Eye, Suffolk, record half-year capital expenditure of £56m and the completion of £14m extension to its Hull cooked meats facility.
“We completed the build phase of our new Eye poultry facility on time and to budget with the commissioning process successfully started in early November,” added Crouch. “I remain confident that continued focus on the strengths of our business, which include long-standing customer relationships, breadth, quality and relevance of our products, robust financial position and industry leading infrastructure, will support the further successful development of Cranswick over the near and longer term.”
Steve Miley, senior market analyst at www.asktraders.com, said the business has benefitted from the rise in African Swine Fever. “These were a strong set of results from Cranswick. Export revenue from far eastern markets has almost doubled over the course of six months, lifting overall sales at Cranswick, for the quarter, by a solid 7.1%,” he said. “A global outbreak of African swine fever has played into Cranswick’s hand, boosting demand for the UK producer’s produce, particularly in China which ha been hard hit by the outbreak.
“Cranswick shares have already risen 22% so far this year as investors price in increased Chinese demand. However, investors were prepared to push the stock even higher on the back of today’s results.”