According to the convenience foods manufacturer, the business saw group revenue decline by 15.0% in the period, to £312.7 million, with its food-to-go categories down by 21.7% year on year, reflecting the impact of Covid-related restrictions on demand in food-to-go categories.
Other convenience categories declined by 2.1%, on both a reported and pro-forma basis, the company noted.
On a month-by-month basis, November saw the biggest decline in pro-forma revenue in the quarter, with group sales down by 17% and food-to-go categories down by 24%. In December, group sales declined by 14% and food-to-go declined by 20%.
Patrick Coveney, Greencore chief executive, commented, “This has been another challenging period for Greencore, and, as ever, I would like to thank all of our colleagues for the outstanding professionalism and resilience that they are showing.
“Although the difficult trading conditions are likely to persist in the near term, we remain confident that demand for our food-to-go categories will recover strongly as the effects of Covid-19 recede and mobility restrictions are removed,” Coveney added.
The reintroduction of a UK national lockdown on 4 January means that group revenue is currently 20% below prior-year levels, with pro-forma revenue in its food-to-go categories currently running approximately 35% below prior-year levels, the company noted.
Elsewhere, the completion of the Brexit process has had only a ‘modest’ operational impact on the firm, as Greencore had ‘completed extensive Brexit planning and was well prepared for any near-term volatility in the supply chain’.
It noted that the ongoing uncertainty regarding the duration and impact of the Covid-19 crisis ‘makes it difficult to predict FY21 performance’, and, as such, the business’s financial guidance remains suspended.
“We secured a number of new-business wins in the quarter and have a healthy commercial pipeline as we look forward,” said Coveney. “In addition, the operational, debt and equity measures that we have taken in recent months provide us with a strong foundation from which to navigate our way through all of the challenges of Covid-19.
“We are confident that we have the capability and resources to build back the business rapidly as soon as market conditions allow, and we are optimistic about the medium-term prospects for Greencore.”
© 2021 Checkout – your source for the latest Irish retail news. Click sign up to subscribe to Checkout.