Food sales volumes fell at Unilever in the second quarter of 2012 after an increase in the first three months of the year, highlighting the current challenging nature of the sector.

Unilever, which owns food brands including Knorr stock cubes and Flora butter, today (26 July) reported a 2.4% decline in underlying food volumes for the second quarter.

Falling spreads volumes in North America were a factor in the performance of the division, which is Unilever’s second largest behind personal care.

A 3.4% increase in prices helped underlying food sales rise 0.6%, leading to turnover of EUR3.6bn (US$4.37bn).

The lower food volumes in the quarter led to a 1% decrease over the first half of the year. Underlying sales increased 3.2% thanks to price hikes, with turnover reaching EUR7.1bn.

Unilever’s refreshment division, which includes ice cream, reported a 1.4% fall in volumes in the quarter. The poor weather in Europe hit ice cream sales, Unilever said.

How well do you really know your competitors?

Access the most comprehensive Company Profiles on the market, powered by GlobalData. Save hours of research. Gain competitive edge.

Company Profile – free sample

Thank you!

Your download email will arrive shortly

Not ready to buy yet? Download a free sample

We are confident about the unique quality of our Company Profiles. However, we want you to make the most beneficial decision for your business, so we offer a free sample that you can download by submitting the below form

By GlobalData
Visit our Privacy Policy for more information about our services, how we may use, process and share your personal data, including information of your rights in respect of your personal data and how you can unsubscribe from future marketing communications. Our services are intended for corporate subscribers and you warrant that the email address submitted is your corporate email address.

Nevertheless, shares in Unilever rose in early trading in London today (26 July) as organic sales growth and core margins beat analyst forecasts. Personal care and emerging markets, where Unilever predominantly sells non-food products, helped boost sales. Net profit increased 1% to EUR2.4bn.

Click here for coverage of Unilever’s conference call with analysts.