Fonterra, the world’s largest dairy exporter, has posted a rise in first-half sales on the back of the weakening New Zealand dollar.

Sales rose 9.6% to NZ$8bn (US$4.6bn), up from NZ$7.3bn last year. However, on a constant-currency basis, sales would have dropped 7.6% due to declining global dairy prices.

World dairy prices have witnessed a dramatic fall from the highs seen last year due to the slowing global economy, declining demand and increasing exports from the US and Europe.

As a consequence, Fonterra has slashed its forecast payout to farmers three times since January. The forecast payout currently stands at NZ$5.10 per kilogram of milk solids.

“Our result shows Fonterra to be in reasonable shape given the turmoil in the world economy,” Chairman Henry van der Heyden said.

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