The co-op recorded operating profits of €3.295 million, which was down on the previous year’s figure of €3.8 million.
Mr Gibbons said that, given the effects of the second phase of the EU reforms on its dairy business and a huge increase in energy costs, the financial performance has been very satisfactory. “Measures taken in 2004 and 2005 to prepare the business for the EU reforms were vital in maintaining our business performance,” he said.
Mr Gibbons said the co-op has a strong balance sheet with shareholders’ funds of €32m after accounting for a pension deficit under FRS 17.
He said total debt increased to €20m reflecting funding for investments and reorganisation.
Mr Gibbons said the current year is expected to be no less challenging with another phase of EU reform impacting on revenue, a weak dollar, and increasing competition on all fronts.
“In this rapidly changing world, our traditional businesses are losing revenue and our challenge is to match the pace of change and prosper under vastly different circumstances,” he said.
Chief executive Aaron Forde said that in a difficult year the business overall performed well. Some areas are feeling the effects of EU reform and others are moving ahead despite tough competitive conditions, he said.