A “strong” performance from Glanbia’s nutrition ingredients business has led the Irish food group to lift its forecast for full-year earnings.

Glanbia said it expects its adjusted earnings per share to increase 8-10% on a constant-currency basis. In May, it forecast a 5-7% rise.

The improved estimate came as Glanbia reported higher first-half sales and profits. Glanbai booked a 28.8% increase in half-year net profit to EUR85.2m (US$106.9m). Revenue was up 5.8% at EUR1.42bn.

It was Glanbia’s so-called global nutritionals arm that boosted results. The nutritionals business supplies ingredients to companies from infant formula firms to sports products makers.

The company does not provide financial figures specific to that business. It instead groups the nutritionals operations with its US cheese arm.

Revenue and EBITDA from the combined business increased in the first half of the year, although revenues from the US cheese division fell and operating profit was flat.

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Separately, Glanbia also announced a plan to sell a 60% stake in its Irish dairy ingredients arm in a bid to divert resources to more attractive parts of its business.

The company plans to form a joint venture with its majority shareholder, the Glanbia Co-operative Society, to run what it said is the largest dairy ingredients supplier in Ireland.