Bonduelle Vegetable Sales Set Record; Frozen Up 11.7%

Revenues for Villeneuve d’Ascq, France-headquartered Bonduelle topped EUR 2 billion for the first time ever during the 2016-17 financial year spanning July 1-June 30. The EUR 2.288.1 billion sales result, up 16.3% over 2015-16, was propelled by solid organic growth and consolidation of the Irwindale, California-based Ready Pac Foods acquisition into the group toward the end of the year.

“This performance reflects the group’s strong resilience despite unfavorable circumstances – sluggishness of the consumption in Europe, economic crisis in emerging countries, difficult harvests – and its ability to seize promising growth opportunities,” proclaimed a statement issued by the multinational processed vegetable company.

bonduelle veg photo 300Among Bonduelle’s three operating units, the frozen division posted the best year-on-year gain at 11.7% on sales of EUR 648.4 million. While the canned products segment generated the most cash at EUR 984.2 million, the gain was only 1.7% over the previous year. The third division, fresh processed, saw sales increase 1.8% to EUR 655.5 million.

The Europe zone accounted for 55.8% of turnover, but recorded an anemic annual growth rate of just +0.2%. This was in part attributed to poor vegetable harvests in the summer of 2016 that impacted the canned and frozen segments, and disappointing yields in early 2017 that affected the fresh-cut bagged salad business.

The non-Europe zone, accounting for 44.2% of sales, registered an impressive turnover increase of 45.9%. This was due in no small measure to the Ready Pac Foods contribution and favorable exchange rates (+3.1%)

“The strong performance of the canned and frozen segments in North America has been vitiated by the difficulties observed in emerging countries – namely in Brazil and Russia,” advised a financial notice issued by the company. “In Russia, the slight pickup in the economic recovery is not yet translated into an increase in food consumption. Thanks to a wide offer of canned vegetable products (sold under the Bonduelle and Globus brands), the group has successfully maintained its market share and sales prices, and thus its profitability.”

Meanwhile, on June 23 Bonduelle divested its minority holdings in Gelagri companies in France and Spain to joint shareholder Triskalia. The action had no significant impact on the group’s results and cash flow through June 30.