Pioneer Foods has said it is expecting a 14.5-18.5% jump in headline earnings per share for its 2014/15 financial year.

to 654.8cents to 678.1cents 

The South African food maker said its sees earnings reaching to 654.8 cents to 678.1 cents for the period ended 30 September.

Operating profit before one-off items is expected to increase between 26.3% and 29.9% year-on-year.

In an update ahead of the publication of its results next month, Pioneer said its turnover grew by 6% despite what it called a "market contraction" in the fourth quarter, maize deflation and increased competition.

The group said its core categories recorded "a solid volume and turnover performance, resulting in market share gains".

Groceries – excluding Pepsi and biscuits – recorded a "strong performance" driven by wheat biscuits, cornflakes and long life fruit juice.

Pioneer said its essential foods division, in particular bakeries, "sustained momentum" with a "step change in profitability and margins relative to the prior year".

The company said revenue and profits from its international division "recovered well", bolstered by fruit exports.