UK pork producer Cranswick has managed record high pig prices and grown sales during its third quarter.

The group said today (31 January) its underlying sales were up 7% in the period to 30 January thanks to “strong” volume growth.

Total sales were up 8%, including the contribution from Kingston Foods, a business the group acquired last year.

Sales of bacon, sausages and cooked meats were identified as “particularly strong”, although all categories contributed positively to revenues.

The company has focused on expanding by moving into complementary categories, through the formation of a pastry business, and growing exports. Cranswick revealed its fresh pork facilities in Hull and Norfolk were awarded export licences to China and the process to gain Australian export accreditation is also “well advanced”.

Cranswick emphasised it has been able to balance rising input costs – which were driven by “record” pig prices – through price negotiations with retailers.

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By GlobalData

The company said it looks to the rest of the year – and the long-term development of Cranswick – “positively”.

Investec analyst Nicola Mallard said Cranswick’s “top line” in the third quarter was “healthy” and added margins had improved.

She said the company’s fourth quarter should be helped by new contracts and increased her forecasts for annual pre-tax profits for the current financial year and the next. Mallard also lifted her price target on the shares to 1005p.

Shares in Cranswick were up 0.53% at 943p at 12:19 GMT.