Huon Aquaculture EBIT down 63% in 2018

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“Whether farming on land or sea, the reality is that the environment exerts a significant influence over the capacity of any business to deliver growth in sales and earnings,” wrote the Tasmanian salmon farmer.

Huon’s EBIT was down 63 per cent from 2017 (AUD 12.5 million/EUR 7.5 million) to 2018 (AUD 34.2 million/EUR21 million). When compared to 2017 (AUD 60.1 million/EUR 37 million), it was down nearly 80 per cent.

Revenue decreased from AUD 317.9 million (EUR 195 million) to AUD 282 million (EUR 173 million).

“Whether farming on land or sea, the reality is that the environment exerts a significant influence over the capacity of any business to deliver growth in sales and earnings,” wrote Huon Chairman Neil Kearney in the company’s annual report.

“This year (2018-19), despite being well prepared and responding quickly, the events that unfolded made it difficult for Huon to match last year’s performance.”

“The company has demonstrated its resilience to a range of extreme weather and environmental events over the past year. At the same time, it has completed the implementation of a major infrastructure programme that will allow Huon to expand capacity and drive operational efficiencies. We are very confident that the investment undertaken over the past two years will form the foundation for sustainable improvements to revenue, earnings and shareholder returns over the coming years,” added Kearney.

Despite being stung by jellyfish and climate change, Huon wants to make 2020 a year of growth, the Australian salmon farmer vowed.

Huon Managing Director and CEO Peter Bender wrote: “We have record biomass in the water which is expected to translate into a harvest of at least 25,000 tonnes in FY2020 and fish in production that will support a 30,000-tonne production in FY2021. The market remains undersupplied relative to demand which should support average pricing up to $14.50/kg over the short to medium term”.

FY2020 will be the first year since 2014 that Huon will not implement significant changes to the way it operates.