PITTSBURGH: Food manufacturer HJ Heinz, maker of the iconic tomato ketchup, reported a fourth fiscal quarter rise in profits of 7.8% to $181 million (€134.7m; £91.4m), compared with the year-earlier period.

Sales edged up to $2.41 billion from $2.4bn. North American consumer product sales increased 7.3% amid strong growth in frozen meals and desserts, and pasta sauces. European sales rose 3%, while those in the Asia/Pacific region climbed 7.6%.

Heinz attributed the higher sales to a 44% increase in overall marketing spend during the quarter, especially in its North American retail business.

Data sourced from Wall Street Journal Online. additional content by WARC staff