- Wynnstay said while the current financial year has experienced a more challenging start, the group remains well positioned to pursue its growth plans.

Against challenging comparatives, the agricultural and retail group said H1 trading had also been influenced by the weather.

"Two successive poor harvests have reduced the grain crop and the exceptionally mild winter has shortened the housing period for livestock, reducing feed demand," it said.

"While the remainder of March and April, both key agricultural months, are still to come, the first half results are currently expected to be behind the record level of the prior year."

"However current market conditions are encouraging for the second half of the year."

Wynnstay said demand for spring fertiliser had increased and was likely to remain strong, partly as a result of the large acreage of winter cereals, which should also result in a good grain harvest this autumn.

"Wynnstay is also well-placed in the cereal and herbage seed sector and expects a more normalised demand for cereal seed, with strongest sales in the autumn period, in contrast to the last financial year."

Wynnstay said its specialist retailing division continued to make progress with an increase in the number of Country Stores albeit the mild winter has affected the mix of sales.

"The initial integration of the seven new outlets in South West Wales is proceeding to plan and the focus will move to upgrading and enhancing the product offering."

Just for Pets, the Group's pet products chain, experienced an encouraging start to the year and we anticipate opening new retail sites during 2014.

At 8:02am: [LON:WYN] Wynnstay Group PLC share price was -29.5p at 647.5p

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