Hilton Food Group reports continued growth and strategic progress in the 28 weeks to 17 July. Turnover was up 9.1% at £631.9m and operating profits rose by 25.7% to £17.3m. Pre-tax profits were up 26.7% at £16.7m. The interim dividend of 4.6p per share is up from 4.1p last time. Chief executive Robert Watson said: "Despite challenging market conditions we are pleased to report good volume and profit growth with profitability benefiting from favourable exchange rate movements. "We have made strategic progress particularly in terms of geographic expansion with the roll out in Australia and the early stages of a partnership with Sonae in Portugal. "We continue to grow our existing business through innovation and product development including the establishment of a meat trading business in the UK to utilise our industry experience, procurement strength and trade contacts together with the Swedish range extension into pizzas later in the year. "We will continue with our strategy of furthering the geographic reach of the Hilton model exploring a range of new expansion opportunities."
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