MANNHEIM (dpa-AFX) - Biosprite producer Cropenergies has been unable to match its previous year's results in view of lower sales prices and lower production volumes in recent months. Sales in the second fiscal quarter (to the end of August) fell by almost a third to just over 309 million euros, the Südzucker subsidiary announced in Mannheim on Wednesday. Of the earnings before interest, taxes, depreciation and amortization (Ebitda) and adjusted for special items, as well as restructuring costs, only 30 percent of the previous year's result remained at just under 31 million euros. At the bottom line, the Mannheim-based company earned a good 16 million euros, more than three quarters less than a year earlier. Management confirmed its forecast for the year.

Cropenergies had already announced in mid-July that a significant drop in earnings was to be expected. The main reasons are normalized prices for ethanol and lower production and sales volumes due to scheduled maintenance shutdowns. A year earlier, price levels were unusually high. For the year as a whole, raw material and energy costs are expected to remain at the level of the previous year./lew/tih