Nutrition & Health
- Sales decrease by €31 million to €1,998 million due mainly to lower prices
- Earnings considerably down due to margin pressure, plant shutdowns and divestitures
In the Nutrition & Health division, sales to third parties decreased by €31 million to €1,998 million despite positive currency effects (volumes 1%, prices –7%, portfolio –3%, currencies 7%). Intense competitive pressure, especially in the vitamin E business, along with decreased raw material costs in the aroma chemicals business, led to a decline in prices. Sales were furthermore reduced by the disposal of parts of our pharmaceutical ingredients and services business, which involved the custom synthesis business and parts of the active pharmaceutical ingredients portfolio.
Sales volumes were slightly up compared with 2014, thanks to a large extent to increased volumes in our businesses with human and animal nutrition as well as flavors and fragrances.
Income from operations before special items declined considerably. This was mainly because of margin pressure, in addition to effects from plant shutdowns and divestitures. We were able to stabilize fixed costs on the prior-year level by implementing further efficiency measures.
We carried out numerous measures to increase our competitiveness. Special charges arose from, for example, the closure of the sterol site in Pasadena, Texas, at the end of 2015. These charges were contrasted by special income from the disposal of parts of our pharmaceutical ingredients and services business.