The activist investor Nelson Peltz has been re-elected by Heinz shareholders at the food group's annual shareholders' meeting.

The meeting was comparatively poorly attended in comparison with last year's event, which was held during a bitter proxy battle between the board and Peltz, who owns around 5.5% of the company. Peltz was seeking board representation and influence in shaping the group's strategy.

The atmosphere, however, appears to have changed somewhat during the intervening year. Peltz, who was seeking re-election along with the other new board members, said he was "really happy" with the rapport he had struck up with the company and with its latest results.

Meanwhile, chairman, president and CEO William Johnson said the directors were working together "collegially, collaboratively and productively".

Heinz investors also ratified the adoption of majority voting in board elections and the expansion of Heinz's stock repurchase programme.

Heinz told its stockholders that it expects operating profit to jump by 14% during the first quarter of the year.

It said the rise in profits would come on the back of a 9% rise in sales, with "double-digit" sales growth from its ketchup, beans and soup portfolio.

The company is scheduled to publish its quarterly results on 24 August.