Chinese infant formula group Synutra International said it was “pleased” with the performance and ongoing recovery of its core business as it booked an increase in first-quarter earnings and sales.

Net income in the first six months of the year to the end of June, reached US$4.8m from $3.3m last year. Operating profit edged up 3% to $6.9m.

CEO Liang Zhang said the profit growth was despite “a seasonally slower period”.

“We continued to strengthen the sales operation in our core branded powdered formula segment and also experienced significant results within our nutritional ingredients segment,” he said. “As our sales organization and outlet network continued to stabilize, we experienced year-over-year as well as sequential increases to both our shipment volume and average selling price.”

Net sales in the period increased 13% to $82.2m.

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