- Eco Animal Health resumed its dividend after annual profit more than doubled thanks to a recovery in demand from China following a hit from the African Swine Fever impact.

The company also said that Marc Loomes planned to retire as chief executive on 31 December 2022.

For the year ended 31 March, pretax profit rose to £20.3 million from £6.1 million year-on-year as sales jumped 46% to £105.6 million.

The company resumed the payment of a dividend, proposing a dividend of 1.00p per share, which subject to shareholder approval will be paid on 22 October 2021 to shareholders on the register on 24 September 2021.

'The main contributor to the growth was China where a favourable combination of industry structural changes and restocking of the pig herd after the ASF epidemic together with changes in regulations for use of antibiotics in feed created exceptional levels of demand and sales opportunity for Aivlosin,' the company said.

While strength seen in China at the end of the last financial year ahd eased significantly, this decline 'began to reverse ahead of the recent announcement on 28th June 2021 by the China state planner that central and local governments will start buying pork for state reserves,' it added.

The group's historical pattern of second half revenue weighting was expected to be retained during the current financial year.

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