Affco Holdings, New Zealand's largest listed meat processor, posted a loss in net profit for the 2009 season and recommended no dividend in 2010.

The Hamilton-based meat company recorded a net profit after tax of NZ$25m (US$17.6m) compared with NZ$60.2m last season.

The impact of the global financial crisis and lower livestock throughout presented "volatile and challenging conditions", the company said, which was "particularly trying" for the company management.

Despite this, Affco said its outlook for the new season is for "tougher livestock flows", and whilst market returns are at reasonable levels, the company said the strong New Zealand dollar will impact on returns for the business and its suppliers in the new season.

"Low and sometimes negative profit margins have been a regular occurrence over the last six months. While some of this is reflected in the financial year ended September 2009, it will also impact on the result for the ensuing year," chairman Sam Lewis and CEO Stuart Weston said.

"The board is adopting a cautious approach to prospects for the 2010 year in view of the volatile global economic outlook and as a result no dividend is recommended."