US agribusiness giant Bunge has posted a rise in net profit for the second quarter, helped by strong sales of fertiliser in South America and of food products across the world.

Bunge posted second-quarter net earnings of US$182m, or $1.83 per share, compared to $50m, or 50 cents a share, in the year-ago period, reported Reuters.

Analysts polled by Reuters Research had been expecting, on average, earnings of 71 cents a share.

The company's net sales were $5.22bn, compared to $3.10bn in the year-ago period.

Sales volumes in Bunge's food products division rose 29% in the quarter, while gross profit rose 84% year-on-year to $94m.

Bunge also reiterated its earnings outlook for the third quarter and full year, but said strong currencies in Brazil and Argentina and higher energy prices are still a concern.