SGS Group said that its Agricultural Services segment delivered a modest comparable revenue rise of 3.7% to CHF 179m (€145m) as continued growth in Seed & Crop services was offset by lower trade inspection volumes.
Revenue growth from trade-related services was hampered in the firms half year results by low export volumes in the Black Sea and South East Europe regions due to drought and aflatoxins affecting last season’s stocks.
The increase in trade from Western Europe only partially offset this gap, resulting in a decline in activity compared with the peak volumes achieved last year.
Trade business is expected to improve over the remainder of the year as the new season’s crops come to market in the Northern Hemisphere.
Adjusted operating margin for the period decreased from 14.3% in prior year to 13.5% (constant currency basis), impacted by temporarily lower trade activities in traditionally strong regions.