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Cosun reports stable net profit

2 February 2012
All Royal Cosun's business groups reported higher results for 2011. Virtually all the improvement was passed on to the members of the cooperative in the form of a higher beet price. Cosun will pay € 55.69 per tonne of sugar beet delivered during the 2011/12 campaign (2010/11: € 43.00). Cosun's net profit is expected to come to € 115 million (2010: € 109 million), including non-recurring income from the sale of business units.
Results for 2011
At  € 1,776 million, Cosun's consolidated turnover was slightly higher than in 2010. Operating profit came to € 136 million. Owing to the higher beet price, operating profit was lower than in 2010 (€ 157 million) despite the profit improvement at the business groups. Lower financial expenses and a lower tax burden meant net profit was on balance slightly higher.
Suiker Unie (sugar) turned in an excellent result. High prices on the world sugar market and scarcity on the European market led to firmer selling prices and growth in sales.
Aviko (potato products, animal feed and starch) had a volatile year owing to wide fluctuations in potato prices. On balance, the outcome was positive for both the potato chip businesses and the granule and flake activities. The animal feed and starch activities profited from high feed prices and a tight starch market.

Sensus (inulin) again reported a good result. Turnover and margins were higher and costs were lower.
SVZ (fruit and vegetable purees and concentrates) recovered and turned in a profit again in 2011. The product range was reordered and the reorganisation neared completion, SVZ will now concentrate on growth and improving its results.
Cosun disposed of two activities in 2011. Nedalco's alcohol operations were sold to Cargill in the spring; C-5 Yeast Company was later sold to DSM. In the summer, Unifine Food & Bake Ingredients was sold to the American company Dawn Foods. Cosun is pursuing its ambition of concentrating on processing vegetable raw materials and growing further in its selected markets.
Beet price for 2011
A beet price of  € 55.69 per tonne is payable in respect of quota beet with average extractability and average sugar content.The beet price is made up of the EU minimum price, the members' bonus and the sugar content and other payments. The price payable for surplus beet is € 28.93 (2010/11: € 28.25). The sugar yield per hectare was 13.6 tonnes (2010/11: 12.6 tonnes), producing an average financial return for the growers of € 4,038 per hectare (2010/11: € 3,092).
Suiker Unie can look back on an excellent beet campaign. Harvesting conditions were considerably better than in the previous campaign. The campaign in the Netherlands lasted 130 days and was closed on 10 January 2012. Operations at the two factories in the Netherlands were excellent.
The table below shows the Dutch sugar beet harvest and beet sugar production figures for 2011 in comparison with 2010 (between brackets):
Beet processed (tonnes)              5,845,000            (5,272,000)   
Beet sugar content (%)                           17.0                       (16.8)   
Extractability (index)                                 91.7                       (91.1)   
Total sugar production (tonnes)    999,000                (869,000)   
Cosun will publish its definite figures for 2011 via the website www.annualreport-cosun.com in the course of March.