Beleaguered Dutch retail giant Ahold has said its US food distribution unit US Foodservice may not remain profitable this year.

Ahold said the scandal-hit unit might just break even or make a loss this year, due to "serious and significant" margin pressure, reported the Financial Times.

"We cannot exclude anything, including a loss," Ahold was quoted by FT as saying. "This has been a lost year for US Foodservice. Because of everything that has happened, management focus was on getting the house back in order and less on the business."  

US Foodservice was at the centre of a massive accounting scandal at Ahold that led to the resignation of both Ahold's CEO and US Foodservice's CEO.

Earlier this month Ahold appointed Lawrence S. Benjamin as chief executive officer at its US Foodservice unit, effective 1 November.