Murray Goulburn has said it is “pleased” with the Australian dairy group’s performance in a year of “transformation” when costs from a revamp of the business halved profits.

The company yesterday (26 September) booked reported profit after tax of A$14.5m (US$15.1m) for the year to the end of June. A year earlier Murray Goulburn posted profit of A$36.3m.

This spring, Murray Goulburn announced it would cut over 300 jobs as it reacted to a fall in global milk prices.

In its results statement, Murray Goulburn recorded restructuring costs of A$18.4m. It also booked impairment and inventory writedown charges of A$10.6m and “historical environmental remediation costs” at its plants of A$4.1m.

Underlying pre-tax profit, which excluded the costs, was A$37.7m, up from A$37.3m a year earlier. Sales revenue increased 3.5% to A$2.36bn. Retail and foodservice sales were up 10% to A$830m. Ingredient sales inched up 1% to A$1.3bn.

MD Gary Helou said Murray Goulburn performed well against a backdrop of falling dairy commodity prices in the latter half of 2011-12 and a high Australian dollar.

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The co-op begun a A$100m cost-saving programme to increase farmgate milk prices, with $50m of the cuts achieved by the end of the year.

“There is still more work to be done, but I am pleased with our achievements,” Helou said.