Clover-to-Cathedral City maker Dairy Crest said today (16 July) that revenue from its key brands was up 8% in the three months to 30 June.

In a statement issued ahead of the company's AGM, the group said increased advertising had helped boost sales of products including Clover butter, Country Life Spreadable butter and Cathedral City cheese.

Sales for the four brands rose by 8% in value terms, while volumes were up 14%. "The markets for all these brands remain competitive," Dairy Crest said. "We continue to advertise on television and to promote our products to demonstrate their value to consumers."

The UK dairy group said its dairies division was "improving", despite sales being down 3%. Dairy Crest said milk volumes were up 4%, which was offset by lower ingredient prices.

Dairy Crest also announced that had taken on 114 farmers previously selling milk to Dairy farmers of Britain, which went into receivership last month. As a consequence, Dairy Crest has started selling to former DFB customers, including The Co-operative Group.

Meanwhile, Dairy Crest revealed that it had taken full control of bakery and dairy ingredients business Fayrefield Foodtec. On 1 July, it bought the remaining 50% of the business from The Fayrefield Group for GBP2.5m (US$4.1m).

The Dairy Crest board will also see some changes with the announcement that chairman Simon Oliver will retire from the role in January.

Oliver, who has been chairman since 2000, will take on the position of honorary group president.

Anthony Fry, senior MD of investment firm Evercore Partners, has become Dairy Crest deputy chairman and will replace Oliver as chairman in January.