• FY operating profits from US beverages up 6%  to US$127m
  • US beverage sales in 12 months to start of August slip 3% to $723m
  • FY US beverage volumes fall 5%
  • Q4 sales up 6% 
Campbell is hoping to turn round its US beverage operations with new products

Campbell is hoping to turn round its US beverage operations with new products

Campbell Soup Co has seen a single-digit lift in full-year profits from its US beverage operations, but sales and volumes declined. 

Operating profits from US beverages in the 12 months to the start of August were up by 6% to US$127m, the company said. Sales for the unit fell however, by 3%, while volumes slipped by 5%. 

The earnings boost was “primarily driven by lower administrative and marketing expenses”, the firm said. This was offset by a lower gross margin percentage and volumes declines. 

Sales were boosted by an extra 53rd week incorporated into the results. 

In the fourth quarter, US beverage sales were up by 6%, boosted by gains in its V8 Splash beverages and V8 vegetable juice, which offset declines in its V8 V-Fusion range. 

In the group’s international and simple meals & beverages unit, full-year sales fell by 10% to $780m, due to declines in Latin America, Canada and Asia-Pacific. Operating profits for the unit slid by 2% to $106m, due to a drop in volumes and currency movements. 

In July, the company revealed plans to “revitalise” its beverage business by expanding its V8 vegetable juice flavours and taking the brand into protein shakes.

Campbell's group CEO Denise Morrison said yesterday: "We will execute our turnaround plans to strengthen US Beverages and expect to stabilise sales in Australia, where we took further action in the fourth quarter to improve productivity."

The company, whose interests also include canned soup and snacking products, saw group full-year profits increase by 4%. 

To read the company's full statement, click here.