Reorganisation sets Scottish meat firm on path for future

Scottish meat wholesaler AP Jess has reported stronger results following the sale of its Brechin pig processing facility in October 2014.

AP Jess, which supplies wholesale, retail and catering butchers, as well as distribution operations, filed its annual accounts for the year ending 31 March 2014, posting pre-tax profits of £1.6m.

However, the group recorded a retained loss of £1.044m after tax, compared with a profit of £2.8m for the previous year.

AP Jess has several sites and operations across Scotland. The group sold the Brechin pig processing site for an undisclosed sum to Quality Pork Limited, a cooperative farming initiative between Tulip, Scotlean Pigs and Scottish Pig Producers.

In the report, filed on Companies House, the group’s director David Jess said the preparations to sell the Brechin site cost £2.7m. “Restructuring of the balance sheet of AP Jess Brechin, involving the write-down of a number of assets which would not be included in the sale and not required in the future.”

Jess reported that the McKechnie Jess (wholesale and manufacturing) operation as well as AP Jess Paisley have returned to profit. Meanwhile, there has been significant investment in the group’s oyster farm, Traigh Mhor Oysters Limited, which is expected to contribute to profits after harvest. However, Jess also noted the charcuterie business continued to be a “challenge”.

Jess said the year was “one of the most eventful in the history of the group”, adding: “The reorganisation has repositioned the group in a favourable way to address the future... bank borrowings are down and profitability in 2015 is on the increase.”

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