Booths has reported a 58.6% slump in full-year pre-tax profits following a turn down in sales amid the “tough retail environment”.
The upmarket grocer said pre-tax profits were a “modest” £1.63m for the year ending March 28, down from £3.94m the previous year as food deflation and the supermarket price war took their toll on the business.
Sales dipped to £280.7m from £282.2m on the year as EBITDA dropped 10.8% to £13.2m.
Booths said it made a “significant financial investment” into its Fair Milk scheme in May 2014 as it pledged to pay the highest farm gate price in the market to farmers. The grocer is seeking to expand the scheme to other dairy markets and increase the amount it pays suppliers of cream and cheese.
Chief executive Chris Dee said: “In a highly charged retail market Booths has stayed true to their roots by undertaking fair practice with suppliers.
“Our suppliers are vital to the continued success of Booths and we remain committed to supporting small scale artisan producers and farmers. Because our stores are often located in rural areas, our farmers are often our customers as well as suppliers and supporting them in challenging times is part of the Booths DNA.
“Longevity in business requires investment in strong relationships with suppliers and new markets. With the addition of five new stores to Booths estate, an exceptional ‘Great Northern Christmas’ offer, available nationwide, and a significantly increased own-label range, Booths can look forward to a bright future.
“I have every confidence that our value, quality, provenance and service will sustain Booths in the current retail climate.”