Barry Callebaut has announced an acceleration of sales volume growth to 3.1% in the first three months to end of February, helping first-half net profit grow 15.1% to 199.1m CHF ($198.7 million), exceeding analysts’ expectations of 197m CHF.
“We have good visibility in our portfolio and expect a further acceleration in sales momentum. This makes us confident we can deliver on our current mid-term guidance,” said chief executive Antoine de Saint-Affrique.
Barry Callebaut - the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products – said sales volumes increased by 2.4% to 1,046,695 tons in the first six months of fiscal year 2018/19.
In a press briefing, the group said: “Sales volume in the chocolate business grew by +3.5%, which was partly offset by an anticipated decline of -1.7% in global cocoa.
“The increase in the chocolate business was on top of a strong prior-year base and well above the underlying global chocolate confectionery market, which was growing by +1.5%, according to Nielsen. Region Americas (+5.8%) continued its healthy growth in the first six months of this fiscal year. Sales volume growth accelerated in Region Asia Pacific (+5.7%), as well as in Region EMEA (Europe, Middle East and Africa) (+2.0%), where sales volume picked up strongly in the second quarter.”
Last month, Barry Callebaut opened its new office in Beijing as well as a second Chocolate Academy Center in China, its 22nd globally.
Also, in March, the group inaugurated its new Global Packaging Center in Halle, Belgium, which it hopes will considerably strengthen the supply chain in the growing gourmet business.
At the beginning of the year, Barry Callebaut announced the completion of the acquisition of Inforum, a leading Russian B2B producer of chocolate, compound coatings and fillings. The transaction will strengthen its presence in the Russian market, the world’s second largest chocolate confectionery market.
Ruby chocolate, the ‘fourth type of chocolate’, celebrated its first anniversary March 19, 2019, in Tokyo, Japan, where ruby was first introduced to the consumer by Nestlé KitKat Japan. Since then, ruby has been successful in consumer markets across the world. It has been introduced by artisans and more than 20 brands and is currently available in over 40 markets in South Asia, Europe, South America, Australia, New Zealand and South Africa.
To spur the arrival and expansion of the fourth chocolate category, Barry Callebaut initiated rubychocolate.com, a crowdsourced platform where consumers are invited to share their voice and excitement on Ruby chocolate.
Also, this year, Unilever launched Magnum Vegan in the US and in Australia, crafted with dairy-free chocolate from Barry Callebaut.
The group says it was awarded an A- for its carbon reduction activities in the Carbon Disclosure Project (CDP) 2018 assessment. This puts Barry Callebaut in the top 6% of the disclosing companies. CDP is an independent organization that receives and assesses the carbon reduction plans of over 7,000 companies every year, scoring them on a scale from A, the pioneers, to F.
Last month, Barry Callebaut published its action plan under the Cocoa and Forests Initiative. The group stated it has mapped 100% of the farms and warehouses in its direct supply chain at risk of sourcing from protected forest areas, which means it has mapped all the cocoa farms within 5 kilometers and all cocoa warehouses within 25 kilometers of a protected forest area.
By the end of the year, Barry Callebaut says it will have mapped all the farms in its direct supply chain in Côte d’Ivoire and Ghana, establishing 100% traceability for its direct supply chain in the world’s two largest cocoa producing countries.
- More on the results: Barry Callebaut Group – Half-Year Results, Fiscal Year 2018/19.