Tate & Lyle expects sweetener margins to drop

by Jeff Gelski
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LONDON — Sweetener selling prices in the Americas for the 2010 calendar year will be below the level achieved in the 2009 calendar year, London-based Tate & Lyle, P.L.C. said Jan. 28. After taking into account lower input costs, including net corn costs, overall sweetener margins in the 2010 calendar year within the Americas are expected to be somewhat below the 2009 calendar year. Operating profit for the full year will be marginally below last year.

The company gave the outlooks for the 2010 calendar year while issuing a management statement for Oct. 1, 2009, to Dec. 31, 2009, or the third quarter of the fiscal year. Performance in the third quarter was below expectations, before the impact of exchange translation, principally because of lower industrial sales volumes in Food & Industrial Ingredients, Americas.

Sucralose, Food & Industrial Ingredients, Europe and Sugars each performed in line with expectations during the third quarter. The company reduced its net debt £123 million ($200 million) to £864 million ($1.4 billion) during the quarter.

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