Canadian food manufacturer and retail operator George Weston has reported an increase in net income for the second quarter.

The company said on Friday (29 July) that the operator of Loblaw, Canada’s largest grocery retailer, reported 22.7% increase in net earnings to reach C$157m (US$165.2m) for the quarter ended 18 June. Consolidated sales were up 0.7% over the quarter to $7.5bn.

George Weston, meanwhile, has appointed current CFO Pavi Binning as president of the company. Commenting on the appointment, chairman Galen Weston said: “Since he joined George Weston a year ago as chief financial officer and before that as a director of Loblaw Companies Limited, Pavi has made a substantial contribution to the Company and its operating subsidiaries.”

Mr Weston added that the company will announced a new CFO in “due course”, but that the senior finance team will “serve us very well under Pavi’s directon.

George Weston’s second-quarter numbers included results for its food manufacturing division Weston Foods and confirmation of figures from Loblaw, which were announced in June.

Weston Foods saw sales increase 13.4% to C$407m, with volume up 10.6% on the previous year. 

Operating income rose 18.2% to C$65m and operating margin from the division rose to 16% from 15.3% in the same period of 2010. The company attributed the improvement to higher pricing, the acquisitions and by benefits realised through productivity improvements.

Shares in George Weston fell 0.66% at the market’s close on Friday to $66.3 a share.