US dairy firm Land O’Lakes has recorded a drop in first-half earnings as the company continued to face economic challenges and “volatile” markets.

In the six-month period, net earnings fell 21.5% to US$6.9bn, the company reported today (31 July). Excess milk supplies, for instance, hit Land O’Lakes dairy business.

“Earnings across business units are mixed as we face continuing challenges from the struggling national economy and volatile markets,” said Land O’Lakes president and CEO Chris Policinski. “We are addressing these challenges by focusing on growing revenues, reducing costs, improving efficiencies and streamlining processes as part of our company-wide initiative called total margin management.”

Net sales, however, were up 8% to $7.5bn from $6.9bn a year earlier.