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British Sugar and Primark owner takes hit due to falling sugar prices

PUBLISHED: 14:21 26 February 2018 | UPDATED: 14:21 26 February 2018

British Sugar Cantley Factory.
Picture: ANTONY KELLY

British Sugar Cantley Factory. Picture: ANTONY KELLY

Archant Norfolk 2017

Primark and British Sugar owner Associated British Foods (ABF) has said it remains on track despite taking a forecast hit in its sugar division.

The company has been hit by lower EU sugar prices after the end of quotas and removal of constraints on exports, however this has been somewhat mitigated by a bumper UK crop.

British Sugar, which has factories at Bury St Edmunds, Cantley between Great Yarmouth and Norwich, and Wissington near Downham Market, has seen higher yields with production up 1.38 million tonnes from 0.9 million tonnes last year.

Due to the large yields seen across Europe the EU has become a net exporter of sugar which has led the domestic prices to fall.

Primark has seen sales leap with ABF putting a 9% rise down to increased retail selling space. However, like-for-like sales are expected to show a decline of 1% for the 24 weeks to March 3 due to an unseasonably warm October.

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