Tate & Lyle, the UK food ingredients group, today (25 September) warned again that its annual profits would be lower than a year earlier, when high commodity prices boosted returns.

The company said "strong co-product revenues" during the "commodity price peak of summer 2008" had boosted the business last year.

However, despite an "encouraging start" to the current fiscal year, Tate & Lyle said it would not match last year's earnings.

"As expected, demand from food and beverage customers has proved resilient and we have continued to experience challenging conditions in EU sugar and industrial ingredients," said chief executive Iain Ferguson. 

"Against this backdrop, we have continued to take the actions necessary to strengthen the group's balance sheet, reduce our costs and ensure that we are well positioned as markets improve."

Shares in Tate & Lyle were down 0.48% at 413p at 09:57 BST this morning.

The company will issue its half-year financial results on 6 November. New CEO Javed Ahmed is slated to take up the reins on 15 November.