Higher sales have propelled Industrias Bachoco, the Mexican poultry group, to file an operating profit in the third quarter of the year.

The company, which last year booked a third-quarter loss on the back of weak poultry demand and soaring raw material costs, yesterday (26 October) filed an operating profit of MXN35.3m (US$2.7m) for the three months to the end of September.

The result compared to an operating loss of MXN243.6m in the third quarter of 2008.

Bachoco still reported a net loss of MXN53.1m but that was almost a half less than the MXN100.3m booked a year earlier.

Margins were boosted by higher sales prices, which also drove a 19.3% rise in turnover to MXN5.61bn.

CEO Cristobal Mondragon said the slowdown in the Mexican economy had dampened demand. He added, however, that Bachoco had managed to stave off weak consumer sentiment.

"We continued implementing our growth plans through the integration of several business agreements reached during the quarter, with which we expect to strength our leadership position in the Mexican poultry industry," Mondragon said.