It has been an exceptional year for Metcash with sales exceeding $16bn for the first time in our history, and this has driven significant earnings growth and record operating cashflow.
Our Pillars have done an outstanding job in continuing to manage through the many challenges arising from COVID, particularly those related to meeting elevated demand, supply chain challenges and the need to adjust our operations in response to the ever-changing health regulations including lockdowns, work from home requirements and border restrictions.
I am extremely proud of our Pillars and independent retailers who, despite these challenges, continued to drive the implementation of our MFuture initiatives aimed at further improving their competitiveness. We can see the benefits of their efforts in the continuation of strong sales well over a year after the commencement of COVID in March last year. Shoppers are clearly enjoying shopping locally and enjoying the improved competitiveness of our retailers.