Covid and poor potato crop hit trading at McCain UK

McCain Foods (GB) Ltd is the UK's leading manufacturer of frozen potato products. The Company operates in two distinct sectors of the UK food market, In Home (Retail) and Out of Home (Food Service & QSR) eating. Frozen potato giant McCain saw drop in annual sales and fell to a loss last year as Covid hit its out of home sales and it suffered from a poor potato crop.

As a result of Covid-19, the business re-prioritized, focusing on three core objectives: safety of our workforce, cash preservation and revenue generation.

For the financial year ended June 2020, total sales have declined marginally due to sales demand being impacted in the final quarter by the Covid-19 pandemic and the subsequent closures/restrictions within Out of Home markets. This in turn has also impacted operations as a result of managing demand and supply across all channels, including a surplus of raw potatoes.

Operationally, the business was also impacted by a challenging 2019-2020 potato crop. Harvesting of the crop was significantly impacted by severe rainfall and flooding, leading to a large proportion of the storage crop being left in the ground and resulting in increased potato costs for the year.

The Company continued to make significant investments throughout the year in both capital, including the renewal of the Scarborough facility, and the brand including media advertising. Restructuring costs associated with the Scarborough regeneration investment were incurred during the year, reflecting impairment of fixed assets and associated employee costs.

The Company's loss for the financial year is £2,572,000 (2019: Profit £33,427,000). The company has net assets of £160,901,000 (2019: £188,654,000).

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