Mole Valley Farmers has reported sales growth of 10% and an increase in annual profits for the year ending September 2021, leaving the business well placed to maintain investment and support for the agricultural community.
Despite a year of lockdowns, supply chain disruptions and cost inflation, the farmer-owned business achieved a revenue of £522 million and a post-tax profit of £3.8m.
This uplift in revenue was due to strong sales across the retail business and some element of inflation in key agricultural products and animal feeds.
The growth in retail sales was buoyed by an increase in Country Members, with numbers rising by 35% to over 34,000. Total membership now stands at 99,000, a 21% increase this year.
Mole Valley Farmers’ chief executive Jack Cordery said the ultimate aim of the group was to ensure a strong and responsive business that would help its farming customers to improve long-term productivity, profitability and sustainability.
“We have continued to take a prudent approach to costs and focused on reducing spend and driving efficiencies,” he said.
“We have invested in our commercial teams, our manufacturing capability, our stores, new product development and systems and processes to ensure we remain agile and efficient. Ultimately this is about achieving our aim of being ‘the lowest cost operator in the market’ with the highest levels of service.”
In recognition of the crucial role Farmer Shareholders and Country Members play in supporting the business, Mole Valley Farmers developed a loyalty bonus scheme for Shareholders for the financial year 2021/22.
Mr Cordery said that more than £2m was also returned to Shareholders and Country Members in point-of-sale benefits in 2020/21.
Mr Cordery added: “Challenging trading conditions are likely to continue in the year ahead, thanks to continued supply chain challenges, cost inflation, dealing with the implementation of Brexit and the ever developing environmental agenda.
“However Mole Valley Farmers is in a strong position to continue to deliver value and service to our feed and rural customers, who are at the heart of everything we do. I’d like to thank them, together with the Mole Valley Farmers team for their continued support.”