Thursday 4th July, 2019 Media release

Best result in eight years for Blue Sky Meats

Growth in all areas of the business, significant financial improvement and continued gains in procurement has Southland meat processor and marketer Blue Sky Meats running at a strong pace.

The company will soon release its Annual Report 2019 and is pleased to announce it has delivered its best result in eight years.

The financial year has ended with revenue up by 34 per cent to a record $140 million, and net profit before tax (NPBT) up 36 per cent to $5 million.

Along with processing 25 per cent more animals to a total of 742,000, these results are heartening given the sustained high schedule prices and declining total sheep numbers the industry experienced throughout the period.

Blue Sky Meats CEO Todd Grave was pleased with the results, but was pushing ahead to increase performance.

“We still have some way to go in terms of improving these metrics and delivering them consistently to our shareholders,” he said.

Building on the success from last year, the implementation of Blue Sky Meats’ Strategic Plan continues to make significant gains for the business, exceeding the targets set two years ago. This is a profit gain plan comprised of 20 focused projects within the business to advance company performance and position it on an upward trajectory.

Grave was thrilled with the success of the Strategic Plan, which he put down to the commitment from Blue Sky Meats’ people.

“We’re two years into the plan and we’ve seen the scale and profit of our business grow substantially.

“We have amazing people at Blue Sky Meats. Every person here is part of this success and I’m very proud of the team for the consistent and diligent work they’ve put in.”

The Operations Team have made efficient use of the Gore facility through the further processing of offal into pet food ingredients, with additional opportunities now being explored for its ongoing use.

The current plant capacity infrastructure at Morton Mains continues to constrain growth opportunities. However, additional throughput was still achieved, and an $11 million capital expenditure programme is now underway to address constraints, increase efficiency, reduce physical hazards and improve environmental performance.

In addition to this investment, the company’s injury frequency rate has decreased by 40 per cent over the past three years, and by 20 per cent in FY2019.

Blue Sky Meats Chairman Scott O’Donnell said the past year had been one of significant positive change and improvement within the company.

“We have a great team in place and are now focused on delivering the next stage of the Strategic Plan,” he said.

A successful recruitment campaign and an investment in Blue Sky Meats’ environmental footprint were performance highlights, outside of the financials. Taking a proactive approach in addressing environmental concerns, this year work began on a new $3.7M wastewater treatment plant and dissolved air filtration system.

“This project is going to improve the quality of the effluent we irrigate to land, address compliance requirements and will help reduce odour,” O’Donnell said.

The company’s annual general meeting will be held on 8 August, 4pm at Transport World in Invercargill.

Blue Sky Meats has processed 25 per cent more animals in the past financial year, revenue is up by 34 per cent to a record $140 million, and net profit before tax (NPBT) up 36 per cent to $5 million.