Ireland-based B2B and consumer food company Kerry Group today (7 August) posted higher half-year sales and profits thanks to growth from its ingredients division.

Net profit was up 65.8% at EUR194.7m (US$260.4m) thanks to the absence of one-off items booked in the results for the first half of 2013.

Kerry said trading profit increased 3% to EUR74.7m despite a 1.9% fall in revenue to EUR2.89bn.

The company said foreign exchange weighed on its top line. Underlying sales were up 3.2%, with volumes from continuing business 2.7% higher.

Volumes from Kerry’s ingredients and flavours arm, which accounted for over 72% of sales in the half, improved in the second quarter versus the first three months of the year.

Underlying sales from Kerry’s ingredients and flavours division increased 4.7%, with trading profit up 4.9%.

Sales from Kerry’s consumer business, which includes brands like Mattessons and Cheestrings, dipped 0.9%. Kerry said it promoted less during the period, which led to a fall in volumes. Trading profit fell 2.4%, although trading margins were up.

Kerry CEO Stan McCarthy said the company was “confident” of hitting its forecast of a 6-10% rise in adjusted earnings per share in 2014.