Want Want China Holdings has posted an increase in full-year profits boosted by the recovery of the dairy market in its domestic market.

For the year to the end of December the firm earned US$313.2m compared to $263m in the previous year, Want Want said earlier this week.

Revenue increased by 10.1% to reach $1.71bn in 2009. Revenue of dairy products and beverages recorded a robust growth of 48.9% over the previous year due to the recovery of the dairy market demand in China, the successful launch of “pocket-convenient beverages” and further business penetration into rural markets.

Profits attributable to equity holders of the company increased by 19% to $312.6m, while operating profit increased 16.1% to reach $355.9m.

The company said revenue from dairy products and beverages grew by 48.9% in the 12-month period to $797.7m.

Revenue from snack foods however, slipped by 2.8% to $435.3m. The figure was adversely affected by weaker demand in southern and eastern China.

Want Want's directors have recommended a final dividend payment of $1.50 per ordinary share, totalling $197.9m for 2009.

The proposed final dividend is calculated based on just under 13.2bn shares in issue as of Monday.