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Seeka cuts profit forecast on increased kiwifruit losses

Seeka cuts annual profit forecast on increased kiwifruit spoilage

By Tina Morrison

Oct. 14 (BusinessDesk) - Seeka Kiwifruit Industries, the country's biggest kiwifruit grower, cut its full-year profit forecast as it lost more fruit than expected late in the season due to a lack of storage.

The Te Puke-based company expects profit in calendar 2015 to increase between 10 and 40 percent from $3.2 million in 2014, it said in a statement. The forecast includes expected insurance payments from a fire at its Oakside, Tauranga, post-harvest site in March. That's lower than the company's August forecast for an annual profit gain of between 30 and 40 percent, which excluded one-time items such as insurance payments.

Seeka said the fire at its Oakside site had unexpectedly impacted fruit storage, and fruit losses are higher then previously forecast. The company said it's in talks with its insurers over a separate claim to the cover costs and losses associated with increased fruit loss, and the lower end of its forecast profit range reflects the losses being uninsured.

It expects to update shareholders further at a meeting on Oct. 21.

Shares in Seeka fell 1.5 percent to $3.35. The stock has gained 5.3 percent so far this year.


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