The Harrison & Hetherington group made a profit in the second half of 2007 despite the foot-and-mouth and bluetongue outbreaks, which closed its livestock markets for two months.

But chairman Alan Bowe said the two diseases had had an impact on the profitability of the group’s farmstock division by £187,000 in the six moths to 31 December, 2007.

On a turnover of almost £4.4m the group posted an operating profit of £1m with pre-tax profits of £288,000. Shareholders funds increased to £11m with the group’s directors recommending an interim dividend of 6.5p a share.