Dairy Crest milk tanker

Dairy Crest has recorded a 31% rise in profits, helped by cost-cutting and the sale of its London milk depot.

The company’s pre-tax profit grew to £65.3m in the year ending 31 March, while revenues were up 1% at £1.39bn.

In January the Cathedral City producer announced the sale of its Nine Elms depot in Battersea, which returned a £15m profit.

See also: Dairy Crest/DCD raise milk price formula 2.486p/litre

It also achieved £25m of cost savings in 2013-14 and had earmarked another £20m for the year ahead.

Chief executive Mark Allen said it had been a year of consolidation in challenging trading conditions.

“The strength of our key brands and our proven ability to cut costs and drive efficiencies meant that we remain confident that we can generate profit growth,” he said.

“Additional profit growth will come from our project to add value to the whey powder stream at Davidstow, which is on track.”

Dairy Crest predicts the £45m investment in a demineralised whey powder plant at its Cornish site could boost annual profits by £5m from 2015-16 by tapping into the high-value baby food sector.