On a global scale, there has generally been a good demand for grass and clover seeds. At the same time, there has been a tight supply which has been particularly pronounced in North America. It has driven the overall price level up across segments and geography.
Revenue for the period represents a growth rate of 11.6 pct. year-on-year. The global forage & turf business grew by 12.2 pct., whereas the beet and vegetable business grew by 5.3 pct.
The increase in revenue is thus mainly due to the fact that it has been possible to obtain higher prices in the forage and turf seed market.
The growth in revenue in the beet and vegetable business relates to the sugar beet and seed potato activities.
Truels Damsgaard, CEO of DLF, welcomes the good start to the 2021/22 season:
-We have achieved a remarkable result for the first half of 2021/22 which has exceeded our expectations, and it is especially the North American market that has surprised us. The seed harvest 2021 in North America was remarkably poorer than usual due to an exceptionally long dry spell during growth season, and market prices have reacted sharply. We are currently looking at prices in North America which have reached a historically high level.
The Danish seed harvest was above normal in 2021, whereas other seed producing countries in Europe did not reach their normal yields. The New Zealand seed harvest is impacted by rain and looks to be lower than standard. This is also the case in South America where the crop has suffered greatly from dry conditions.
Compared with the previous six months, the DLF Group's North American forage & turf business has contributed with a significant increase in earnings. In Oceania and South America, earnings have also increased, and earnings in the European market in the first half of 2021/22 have maintained the level compared to the same period last year.
The DLF Beet Seed business has delivered better earnings, which is due to both a period deferral and a changed sales mix, while the seed potato business in Danespo has regained momentum in sales of seed potatoes in especially North Africa following the Covid-19 lock-downs. Overall, the beet and vegetable seed business contributes with an improved operating profit in the period compared with the same period the year before.
-We are currently in the middle of our peak season, where we sell more than half of our seeds. Our order books are well stocked and our supply chain is running at full power. Despite Covid-19 restrictions, our employees have managed to maintain a good flow in deliveries, and it is an impressive performance for which staff at all levels deserve to be highly commended, says Truels Damsgaard.
Very recent geopolitical events concerning the military situation in Ukraine represent a strategic and commercial exposure on the DLF Group. It is likely to have a certain impact on the current year and beyond but difficult to quantify at this moment. We will to a limited extend be able to redirect seed to other destinations but as this is happening very close to the drilling time the window is closing soon.