Ornua (formerly known as the Irish Dairy Board) saw turnover reach €2.3bn in 2020, allowing earnings (EBIDTA) to reach €107.4m, up almost 50% on 2019.
Publishing its operating and financial results for the 12 months ending 26 December 2020, Ornua CEO John Jordan said: “Ornua had a unique performance in a unique year, and we are pleased to report a 69% operating profit gain.
"Looking ahead, we are cautiously optimistic about the gradual reopening of economies as the global vaccine roll-out gathers pace.”
Sales of the iconic Kerrygold brand were up 13% in volume and Kerrygold says this means there are now 10 million packets of butter and cheese sold each week.
These extra sales allowed Ornua to deliver a 54% year-on-year increase in the brand premium and bonuses paid to co-op members, with €68.7m returned to co-op members in the Ornua value payment.
The co-op members are all the main milk processors that trade with Ornua for butter and cheese, which is most of the processors except Kerry Group.
Kerry Group trades some product with Ornua, but is not an Ornua member.
This is the first set of results with a new governance structure in place that was finalised recently, with the addition of two non-executive directors Anne McFarland and Anne O’Leary.