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Real food profits take a hit due to sugar row

THE Real Good Food Company saw its share price climb 1.3% in spite of confirming a sugar dispute has hit annual profits and is still unresolved.

The business, which includes Carluke based jam maker R&W Scott, among its subsidiaries, expects earnings before interest, tax, depreciation and amortisation to be £3.3 million in the 12 months to March 31.

That would compare to EBITDA of £10.5m which resulted in an underlying pre-tax profit of £6.3m in the previous year.

The Napier Brown subsidiary is involved in a pricing dispute with British Sugar, owned by Associated British Food, and has made a complaint which has been referred to the Competition and Markets Authority.

Real Good Food said its Garret Ingredients arm was also feeling the impact of that but admitted: "The group remains unable to be definite on a timetable for the resolution of the dispute."

It said that problems had masked good progress in other parts of the company which included year-on-year EBITDA growth at bakery ingredients firm Renshaw and dessert maker Haydens.

Other group businesses were said to be in "good shape" with investment in R&W Scott delivering sales growth.

Shares closed up 0.5p at 38.5p.

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