Europe, UK, Ireland

British potato supplier cautious despite sales growth

A Cheshire food specialist which operates as one of the largest single suppliers of crisping potatoes to the UK industry has increased sales towards the £40m mark. However, a director has told Insider that last summer’s drought could cause a “significant reduction” during the current year.

Mercian supplies potatoes for approximately 1.2 billion packets of crisps a year. Founded in 2005, it operates from its headquarters in Macclesfield.

For the year to 30 June 2018, Mercian reported turnover of £39.7m compared to £35.7m the prior period. Pre-tax profits were down from £2.4m to £1.93m.

Looking ahead, director Phillip Kemp told Insider that last summer’s drought will cause a “significant reduction in turnover, volume and profits”.

“Climate change is also causing massive swings in the marketplace,” he added. Kemp also said that Brexit would improve potato prices due to limited competition.

“Yet it’s not affecting any of our planning,” he said. “If anything, we are becoming more UK-orientated.”

Report by Insider Media