Farmer-controlled supply business Mole Valley Farmers has announced record profits of £2.6m for the year ending 30 September 2006.

Despite further rationalisation within the farming and supply sectors, the south-west farmer-owned retailer saw a 15% increase in turnover to £167m and a 12% rise in operating profits.

Chief executive Andrew Jackson said: “The main thrust across our agricultural business during the trading year was to streamline business processes, segregate further costs and to challenge our performance and output efficiencies at all levels.”

MVF’s acquisition of Pye Bibby Agriculture’s Southern feed business in 2005 and its joint venture with Timac UK last August had brought greater economies of scale, he added.

“The primary purpose of a farming co-operative is to benefit its farming members. The growth which we have experienced during the financial year can be attributable to adhering to this business philosophy, which is reflected in the ongoing competitiveness of our products.”

MVF acquired 941 new shareholders during the year, and saw sales in its agricultural and retail divisions rise by 10% and 8% respectively.

“Whilst pleased with our financial results, we can achieve further improvements by monitoring costs even more closely and improving our service, supported by competitive pricing,” Mr Jackson said.