Sweden-based conglomerate Lantmännen has swung into the red during the first half of 2009 despite "good results" from its food division.

Lantmännen, which has also has interests in sectors including constriction and machinery, booked a loss of SEK196m (US$26.3m) for the six months to the end of June.

Net revenues fell 17% to SEK17.96bn. Underlying turnover was down 12%.

"This sharp decline in results has been caused by operations in Lantmännen that are still extremely sensitive to the effects of the recession," said president and CEO Per Strömberg (pictured).

"However, our food portfolio, which is less sensitive to the recession, is showing good results."

Nevertheless, Lantmännen said the March glass-in-chicken recall had cost the business SEK70m.  Strömberg said chicken volumes had recovered and had risen by almost 8% during the first half of the year.