Scandinavian food manufacturer HKScan has lowered its EBIT forecast for 2010 after seeing profits slide during the first six months of the year.

Group EBIT for the first half was EUR13.6m (US$17.8m), falling short of the EUR22.5m it posted for the same period of 2009.

EBIT for the second quarter was down to EUR 8.1m, down from 14.3m in the same period of 2009.

The company attributed the fall to industrial action in Finland during April and May as well a cattle shortage in Sweden.

CEO Matti Perkonoja said: “In Finland, the unanticipated industrial action in spring had a crucial impact on the negative earnings delivered for the quarter. The poor performance in the first half of the year calls for rapid and intensive development measures throughout the business chain.”

HKScan said its 2010 EBIT would be “”somewhat lower than in 2009”.

In the second quarter of the year, group net sales were EUR985.7m, down on the EUR1.03bn it posted for the same period of 2009.

During the second quarter, net sales fell to EUR502.3m, a drop on the EUR541.6m it reported in the corresponding period of 2009.