Chicken Industry

Astral heading for its first loss

Astral has just warned the market that it will announce the first loss in its history on 20 November when it reports results for the 2023 financial year.

In a trading update, Astral said it expected earnings per share to be between 145% and 155% lower than last year. This would result in a loss of between 1 251 cents and 1 529 cents per share. Last year it reported a profit of 2 781 cents per share.

Astral gave no details at this stage, but it has previously listed the huge costs caused by power cuts and other infrastructure failures and the impact of this year’s bird flu outbreaks.

Other large producers will be similarly troubled, but they will hope to survive. Smaller farmers will go out of business. And that’s even before the government might encourage a new flood of dumped chicken imports.