Finland's Raisio has seen quarterly earnings more than treble as its food division moved into the black.

The Benecol maker posted underlying operating profit of EUR4.2m (US$6.5m) for the three months to the end of March, up from EUR1.2m a year earlier.

Reported operating profit stood at EUR8.4m, thanks to a one-off gain of EUR4.2m from the end of joint ventures with Swedish firm Lantmännen. Turnover jumped 20% to EUR118.9m.

Raisio CEO Matti Rihko said last year's moves to sell off unprofitable businesses had started to pay off.

"After a long, unprofitable period the Food Division posted a profitable result, which speaks of a healthier cost structure and a new approach in business operations," Rihko said.

Raisio left its full-year outlook unchanged. Turnover and underlying operating profit are expected to rise, although the company warned that profits from its feed business would remain under pressure.