Sweden's leading abattoir and meat group, Swedish Meats, is fighting to turn its operations around under new managing director Peter Rasztar. Figures for the first four months show that the group still has a long way to go.

Losses after net financial items narrowed only marginally to SKr83.7m from a SKr98m loss in the same period last year. The company did not issue turnover figures. Rasztar described the result as "unsatisfactory", but added recent price hikes in the wake of the foot and mouth disease would show up in earnings later in the year.

Mr Rasztar joined Swedish Meats only little more than a month ago but quickly initiated a cost-saving programmes that cuts right through the organisation, from production to marketing. The aim is to slim the organisation to better match the declining volumes among Swedish meat farmers, of which Swedish Meats had lost the lion´s part. As part of the cost-cutting programme, the company will shed 25% of its white-collar work-force.

By just-food.com correspondent in Sweden