Origin Enterprises plc has delivered a satisfactory performance for the seasonally important third quarter considering the adverse impact of prolonged cold weather on farm activity, its latest financial results show.
According to its latest trading update, despite reasonably favourable autumn planting conditions, normal spring farm activity was held back by exceptionally cold conditions in April, which extended across the whole of Europe.
Persistent cold spring weather and the absence of pest and disease prevalence in crops has resulted in lower input volumes in its third quarter across its Ireland, UK and Continental European markets, the argi-business said.
Reported group revenue was €597.8 million for its third quarter, a decrease of 1.2% on the prior year, 'primarily reflecting the impact of delayed in-field activities and on-farm crop input investment, following cold spring weather conditions across Ireland, the UK and Continental Europe.'
While overall business volumes are marginally positive year-to-date, this is set against a comparative period that encountered significant challenges with extreme weather conditions and the early stages of COVID-19, it added.
Group revenue for the nine-months ended 30 April 2021 was €1,170.2 million, a decline of 3.3% year-on-year on a reported basis, the results show.
Ireland And The UK
Ireland and the UK recorded a reduction in underlying agronomy services and crop input volumes in its third quarter of 4.5% and an increase year-to-date of 2.4%.
"Volume performance in the quarter was challenging, with the cold weather recorded across the UK resulting in delayed in-field activities and a reduced on-farm spend, despite a return to a more normalised cropping profile," it said.
The company said that COVID-19 continues to be a challenge to its operations, particularly in Continental Europe and Brazil.
"While the group continues to implement a range of extensive measures to ensure the safety of our people and maintain continuity of service to the agricultural community, in line with government and health authority guidelines, increased restrictions across some of our geographies has limited some on-farm access," it said.
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