Several factors including delayed harvests and improved pricing helped push up profits at Chile-based berry company Hortifrut in the first half of 2016, with EBITDA jumping 26.2% to US$43.3 millionIn percentage terms, profit growth outstripped sales growth which was up 10.9% at US$237.1 million, but revenue was still considerable given volume growth only rose by 3.8% to reach 30,388 metric tons (MT).
In a release, the company said a delay in the high temperatures necessary for fruit ripening mean Chilean and Argentine volumes that would normally come in during the second half of the year were delayed into 2016.
Less availability generally drove up prices, while Hortifrut also highlighted good performance from blueberry plantations in Spain in terms of volume and price.
Hortifrut was also able to achieve cost savings in local currency denomination with the help of forward pricing instruments.
Sales from blueberries, raspberries, blackberries and strawberries accounted for 91% of consolidated income during the first half, while the remainder came from value-added products.