Bumper profit for Seeka Kiwifruit

Last updated 16:44 22/08/2014

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A bumper harvest and new business opportunities have helped push up the first-half profit of listed produce company Seeka Kiwifruit Industries.

The company has reported a 121 per cent increase in after-tax profit of $1.5 million for the six months to June 30.

Revenue was up 18 per cent to $79.2m, comparable to the same period two years ago.

Operating profit was $5.8m, including $1.4m from the sale of its stake in Opotiki coolstore operation OPAC.

Seeka said it was satisfied with the result "despite challenging trading conditions and rising costs", including a competitive post-harvesting environment that was making margins tight.

Market share grew nearly 25 per cent for the Hayward variety of kiwifruit but slipped 1o per cent in the SunGold variety as many gold kiwifruit growers rebuilt their orchards.

Gold kiwifruit were particularly hard hit by the Psa bacteria, but market share was expected to rebound when regrafted SunGold orchards reached commercial volumes next year.

In April, Seeka bought importer and ripening services firm Glassfields for $5.4m, which was partly offset by the $3.1m OPAC sale.

The company said it would consider an interim dividend and provide full-year guidance at its shareholder update in October.

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