Apetit Half-Year Financial Report 1 January–30 June 2018: A weak harvest lowered Grain Trade volumes and Group result – strategic measures lay foundations for future

Apetit Half-Year Financial Report 1 January–30 June 2018: A weak harvest lowered Grain Trade volumes and Group result – strategic measures lay foundations for future

This release is a summary of Apetit’s Half-Year Financial Report for the January-June period of 2018. The complete report is attached to this release as a pdf file and it is also available on the company’s website at apetitgroup.fi/for-investors.

April–June, continuing operations*

  • Net sales from continuing operations were EUR 72.8 (76.8) million
  • Operational EBITDA was EUR 0.1 (0.8) million
  • Operational EBIT was EUR -1.4 (-0.5) million

January–June, continuing operations*

  • Net sales from continuing operations were EUR 132.5 (150.8) million
  • Operational EBITDA was EUR 0.1 (1.2) million
  • Operational EBIT was EUR -2.8 (-1.5) million

Key events during the period

  • Apetit invests EUR 9.7 million in a new patty and ball production line in Säkylä.
  • Apetit invests EUR 3.7 million in the construction of a bioenergy plant in conjunction with the Avena Kantvik Oy rapeseed oil milling plant in Kirkkonummi.
  • Avena Nordic Grain Oy and Viljelijän Berner joined their purchasing and sales organisations in production input and grain trade under a new operating model based on partnership.
  • Apetit Vegepops Porkkana-mango was chosen as the Finnish Food of the Year 2018

*Continuing operations include Food Solutions, Oilseed Products and the Grain Trade.


The information has not been audited. The figures in parentheses are the equivalent figures for the same period in 2017, and the comparison period means the corresponding period in the previous year, unless otherwise stated.



The Group’s full-year operational EBIT from continuing operations is expected to fall short of the 2017 level (2017: EUR 1.3 million). Due to the seasonal nature of the Group’s operations, most of the annual profit is accrued in the second half of the year. Sales volumes and the profit outlook for 2018 are burdened by the weak harvest of 2017 and the poor harvest outlook of the current year.

Juha Vanhainen, CEO:

“Apetit has continued with the measures of the strategy announced in March 2018 in its focus areas, which are internationalisation, renewal and efficiency improvement. These measures reinforce Apetit’s position as number one in vegetables and help in building a foundation for the further development of the business.

In June, we announced that we invest nearly EUR 10 million in a new patty and ball production line at our Säkylä plant. The new line will double our production capacity, meet current demand and enable us to produce new products for the Finnish and international markets.

As a part of the project to improve efficiency, Apetit is building a bioenergy plant in conjunction with the Avena Kantvik Oy rapeseed oil milling plant in Kirkkonummi. The bioenergy plant will replace the current energy solution that uses non-renewable fuels and will significantly reduce the carbon dioxide emissions of the entire Group.

Apetit participated in the share issue of the food business development company Foodwest which took place in May-June. Apetit’s holding in the company will promote our strategic goals to focus on product development and to renew and lead the way in vegetable-based diets. One result of the work we have done to date is the nomination of Apetit Vegepops Porkkana-mango as the Finnish Food of the Year 2018 in May. We also continued work on a project to develop a rapeseed ingredient in order to develop a new ingredient with high nutritional content for the international food market.

The goals of renewal and continuous development of operations took concrete form when Apetit’s subsidiary Avena Nordic Grain Oy and Viljelijän Berner joined their purchasing and sales organisations in production input and grain trade under a new operating model based on partnership. Business will be conducted under the name Viljelijän Avena Berner and it will offer Finnish farmers a one-stop-shop for production input and grain trade services.

Increasing the share of food sales abroad has proceeded according to plan. At the end of August Apetit will launch a new selection for the Swedish market called Free From which includes five patty and ball products. In Russia we are continuing work on reinforcing our position through local food product chains.

As expected, the aftermath of the weak harvest of 2017 continued in the first half of 2018 and substantially lowered grain trade volumes and consolidated net sales on the comparison period. The shrinking of the Sales Services network had a negative impact on the net sales of Food Solutions.  Oilseed Products’ performance remained stable as volumes slightly grew on the comparison period. The low price of sugar on the global market led to a weaker result for the associated company Sucros.

During the spring Apetit has carried out adjustment measures to improve profitability, including personnel reductions and other cost saving measures. Their combined impact in 2018 will be EUR 1.0 million and the annual total impact will be EUR 1.8 million.

It is likely that the 2018 harvest season will also be significantly worse than average, as was the 2017 season, which will have a negative impact on the Group’s profit-earning capacity in the second half of the year. The Finnish grain harvest is estimated to be the weakest of the 21st century, which will limit trade opportunities especially in exports. The harvest of field vegetables is also likely to be lower than usual.”



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A news conference (in Finnish) will be held today at 10:00 a.m. at Apetit’s office, Sörnäistenkatu 1 A, Helsinki. A live webcast of the news conference can be followed via apetitgroup.fi/for-investors. The presentation material and a recording of the webcast will be available after the news conference on the company’s website.

Apetit Plc Half-Year Financial Report 1 January – 30 June 2018


Apetit Plc

For further information, please contact:

Juha Vanhainen, CEO, Apetit Plc, tel. +358 10 402 2100

Apetit is number one in vegetables. It is a food industry company firmly rooted in Finnish primary production. We create well-being with vegetables by offering healthy and tasty food solutions that make daily life easier. We also produce high-quality vegetable oils and rapeseed expellers for feeding stuff, and trade grain on the international markets. Apetit seeks to lead the way in vegetable-based food solutions. Apetit Plc’s shares are listed on Nasdaq Helsinki. In 2017, the company’s net sales were EUR 312 million and it had approximately 640 employees. Read more at apetitgroup.fi.

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CEO's review Q4/2020

Esa Mäki, CEO:  “We determinedly continued to improve our profitability in the last quarter of the year. Annual profitability improved by nearly EUR 9 million. Profitability improvement is mainly attributable to strong demand for the Apetit brand products in retail trade, improved efficiency in our own operations and commercial successes both in Finland and in export trade. In the grain trade, we have focused on developing our trading ability, in line with our strategy: we have largely succeeded with this goal, although towards the end of the year, the outlook of grain price development had a negative impact on profitability.  In the fourth quarter, the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic could still be seen most strongly in the Food Service channel of the Food Solutions business, where net sales decreased year-on-year in spite of a partial recovery of sales during the second half of the year. The sales of frozen products grew year-on-year in other channels, especially in retail trade and exports. In Oilseed Products and Grain Trade, the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic still remained minor.   One of Apetit’s strategic focus areas is to strengthen the Swedish market as the primary focus area of food exports. We have made progress towards our goal in the Swedish retail trade and in November, we signed an agreement on the Food Service product sales with a local partner in Sweden. The cooperation started at the beginning of February. We will systematically continue to increase exports in selected markets. In 2020, the value of food exports was EUR 5.3 million.   In December, the European Commission granted a novel food authorisation for Apetit’s rapeseed ingredient, the BlackGrain from Yellow Fields rapeseed powder. The novel food authorisation is the culmination of the BlackGrain product development work we have been doing for years. It also enables us to continue the development of new rapeseed-based ingredients. In addition, we promote to assess options related to the commercialisation of the ingredient.  The commissioning of the bioenergy plant under construction in conjunction with the Kantvik vegetable oil milling plant will be further delayed due to reasons related to an equipment supplier. We are currently assessing different options for completing the construction work. The bioenergy plant is already at an advanced stage of construction and we are aiming to commission it during summer 2021.  In order to ensure the availability of domestic rapeseed raw materials, we are continuing our determined work to increase oilseed plant cultivation area and harvest levels. In December 2020, the Finnish Safety and Chemicals Agency (Tukes) granted a special permission for the spring 2021 regarding a preparation used in treating oilseeds. The possibility of treating oilseeds will support the cultivation of domestic rapeseed, thereby increasing harvest levels from their current low point. In addition to being in good and stable demand, oilseed plants offer a profitable opportunity to increase versatility of crop rotation. The renewed oilseed plant campaign for 2021 started at the beginning of February: we offer contract growers new benefits and tools for oilseed plant cultivation.  The planning for the coming cultivation season is in full swing also for field vegetables. In the coming growing season, we will seek a record harvest in peas as its demand in the export markets continues to be strong. We are also constantly conducting research on new crops at our Räpi experimental farm and promoting the development of domestic vegetable-based proteins: an example of this is the broad bean, which we will again be growing at the experimental farm after an interim year. The harvest will be processed into products later in the autumn.  Apetit published its updated strategy in May. We have proceeded effectively in all strategic focus areas: Optimising core business functions, Strong foothold in Sweden, Growth from plant-based added value products, Developing farming partnerships and Sustainable actions. In light of the 2020 results, we are well on track to reach our financial objectives by the end of the strategy period.” 

CEO's statement Q3/2020

Esa Mäki, CEO: “Apetit Group’s positive profit performance continued in the third quarter: all of our businesses improved their profitability year-on-year. We can be satisfied with our profit performance to date. The remainder of the year involves uncertainties related to the COVID-19 pandemic, for example. We keep our profit guidance for 2020 unchanged: the full-year operating profit is expected to improve year-on-year and to show a profit. The impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic in the third quarter were mainly seen in the Food Service channel of the Food Solutions business, where net sales decreased year-on-year in spite of a partial recovery of sales. Sales grew year-on-year in the other channels of the Food Solutions business. In Oilseed Products and Grain Trade, the impacts of the COVID-19 pandemic were minor. In the challenging operating environment, it has been essential that our employees have stayed healthy and we have been able to maintain normal operations. I want to take this opportunity to express my warmest thanks to all of Apetit’s personnel. The harvest of outdoor-grown vegetables for this harvest season will be normal. The varying weather conditions in the early summer were challenging, with the cool spring, dry early summer and hot June having a negative impact on the growing season of peas in particular. The difficult growing season meant that we fell short of our target for peas by 1.3 million kilograms. Peas represent a significant share of Apetit’s food exports and, unlike in the previous year, pea exports fell entirely in the third quarter. One of Apetit’s strategic objectives is to strengthen food exports, particularly to Sweden. Our total food exports doubled year-on-year by the end of September. In the spring, eight products sold under the Apetit brand were added to the product selection of ICA, the largest retail chain in Sweden. Six new Apetit products were subsequently added to ICA’s selection this autumn. Continuing to strengthen our position in Sweden is a clear goal for us. In addition to retail, we are also seeking growth through the Food Service channel through local cooperation. Natural Resources Institute Finland estimates that the Finnish grain crop this year will be 3.4 million tonnes, which is about 15 per cent lower than last year. The relatively small grain crop will reduce Finland’s export surplus compared to the previous year. The oilseed harvest will be exceptionally low due to the declining area under cultivation and the low expectations of yield per hectare. However, the grain crop and oilseed harvest in the Baltic countries is excellent, which particularly compensates for the exceptionally weak oilseed harvest in Finland. At Apetit, we are continuing our systematic efforts to increase the willingness to cultivate oilseed plants in Finland to increase the area under cultivation and crop yields. The commissioning of the bioenergy plant under construction next to the Kantvik oil milling plant will be delayed to January–February 2021 due to reasons related to an equipment supplier. The bioenergy plant was originally scheduled to be commissioned at the end of 2020. When completed, the bioenergy plant will significantly reduce the energy costs of the Kantvik oil milling plant and the Group’s carbon dioxide emissions as a whole. Based on current information, the decision on the novel food marketing authorisation for Apetit’s rapeseed ingredient is expected before the end of the year. This autumn, we decided to invest in small-scale production equipment located on a subcontractor’s premises. Starting small-scale production will enable us to test the rapeseed ingredient more extensively with potential customers. Our work on developing new ingredients has progressed as planned. We are also continuing to assess alternatives related to the commercialisation of the rapeseed ingredient.     We are systematically executing our strategy with the aim of making Apetit a successful Finnish company focusing on plant-based food products.”