Graincorp’s first half profit has tumbled after the agricultural giant collected less grain because of drought.
Graincorp’s net profit fell 43 per cent to $50 million for the six months to the end of March.
The result was affected by $11 million worth of significant items linked to its oils division.
However, after stripping out those items net profit was still 44 per cent lower at $61 million.
Revenues fell 13 per cent to $2 billion, but the fully-franked interim dividend was held steady at 15 cents a share.
GrainCorp executive chairman and interim chief executive Don Taylor said the group still expected its full year profit to fall.
It warned in February that its underlying net profit would drop to between $80 million and $100 million because of the drought affecting grain crops in Queensland and NSW.
Mr Taylor said the grains division collected lower crop volumes during the first half, sparking increased demand from domestic customers and limiting the amount available to export.
“Looking further ahead, some good pre-planting rains have been recorded in many areas of our catchment with canola planting substantially underway in many areas and good starts for wheat and barley,” Mr Taylor said on Thursday.
“However, it’s a long season and, as always, favourable conditions and good finishing rains will be critical to the delivery of a good crop in eastern Australia.”
Mr Taylor said the company’s search for a new chief executive was progressing well.
Meanwhile, The Australian Financial Review reported Ellerston Capital had lifted its stake in Graincorp to 7.6 per cent.