The UK’s Northern Foods has said its lower sales growth in the fourth quarter to date is putting pressure on its profitability but the company still expects to report results for the year to 31 March broadly in line with expectations.

“The group has continued to make progress with its cost reduction initiatives, and … further price increases are being achieved to mitigate the significant input inflation seen throughout the year,” the company said in a statement.

“The biscuit business has achieved the expected uplift in sales and profitability after last year’s difficult trading,” it added.

Northern Foods makes frozen, chilled and convenience foods for grocery retailers to sell under their own brand.