The falling price of milk has cut the profits of Scotland's biggest dairy company, Robert Wiseman.

The East-Kilbride-based firm has announced profits for the year to 1 April down from £19.4m to £17.9m, following a difficult second six months. Turnover rose from £257.2m to £286.7m.

The fall is being attributed to Wiseman having to cut by an average of 7% the price at which it sells its milk.

However, chairman Alan Wiseman said the group was confident of its strategy and long-term future and believed profits would recover in the forthcoming year.

During the results period, Wiseman was the target of a three-month Competition Commission inquiry into its position in the milk market in Scotland.

'Monopoly' Finding

The commission found that the company controlled up to 85% of the Scotland's milk market.

Having established the existence of a monopoly, the commission said it must now determine whether Wiseman had carried out any "uncompetitive" practices or had "exploited" its position.

Mr Wiseman said he was confident the inquiry would not find the company to have abused its position.

The company has been expanding in England, but it recently withdrew from the battle to buy Unigate's cheese and dairy busines.

Mr Wiseman said he was still looking for acquisition targets, adding: "The consolidation now taking place within the industry will undoubtedly present us with opportunities, which we plan to grasp appropriately."