Spanish food group Ebro Foods has reported mixed half-year results, with operating profit and sales lower but its bottom line boosted by a one-off item.

Ebro posted a net profit of EUR71m (US$94.4m), 5.5% up on the prior year, the pasta and rice producer reported today (29 July). A spokesperson for the firm told just-food the boost was down to a provision for litigation of EUR5m taken in 2005 that they would no longer have to pay.

However, operating profit was down 2.7% to EUR103.4m, hurt by exchange rate effects and an increase in advertising investment.

Sales were also lower, sliding 1.1% to EUR1bn as a result of the sale of its Nomen, La Parrilla, La Cazuela, Pavo Real and Nobleza brands – an anti-trust requirement of it purchasing the former Grupo SOS rice business.

In Ebro’s rice division, EBITDA fell 10.9% to EUR68.2m. Sales inched up 0.3% to EUR553.7m.

EBITDA in the group’s pasta division, however, was up 6.3% to EUR67m despite sales falling 2.6% to EUR471.4m.

Click here to view the full earnings release.