18 April 1997

Strong £ hits Sentry group

SENTRY Farming Group has reported pre-tax profits of £1.47m in the year to Dec 31, 1996.

Turnover rose nearly 30% to £9.5m, partly reflecting the groups larger land area, following its acquisition of farm management company Hallsworth.

The company called it a "difficult farming and trading year", with drought hitting yield, wheat values slumping and a strong £ sterling. Given that, the 2% fall in profits was "satisfactory".

Sentrys managing director Andrew Mason said the group would try to protect itself against falls in grain price this year by forward selling about half the budgeted yield.