KILKENNY, Ireland -- Glanbia, one of the world's top mozzarella producers, reported it is profitable once again after this year's first two quarters.

According to Northern Business Daily, the Kilkenny-based company posted profits of £7.4 million (U.S. $11.7 million) in the six months ended July 5, 2003, compared to a loss of £27.7 million (U.S. $43.7 million) in the comparable period in 2002, when the company absorbed some restructuring costs.

The company noted that the highly competitive market and the strength of the euro trimmed profits some.

Last year, Glanbia, Europe's largest mozzarella producer, closed its under-performing UK consumer meats business and currently is selling its fresh pork production business in the UK. The 2002 sale of the meats business cost the company £52.4 million (U.S. $82.6 million).

Glanbia also is involved in a joint effort with Denver-based Leprino Foods, the world's largest mozzarella producer, to make mozzarella at a plant in Wales. According to the report, the two cheese giants want to gain the lion's share of the European pizza market.

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