Fonterra said it was talking with a small number of potential buyers of its icecream maker, Tip Top.

The dairy co-op has Tip Top and other assets up for sale in its bid to reduce debt by $800 million.

Tip Top had attracted a high number of potential buyers, and the co-op had narrowed that down to a small number, chief executive Miles Hurrell said.

"While we haven't made any final decisions, we are talking with a small number of potential buyers," he said. "Some are interested in buying Tip Top in full and others in part."

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Hurrell said Fonterra expects to make an announcement on Tip Top before the end of its finanicial year (July 31).

Fonterra is also assessing its 18.8 per cent stake in China's Beingmate.

A sales process has also started for Fonterra's 50 per cent share of DFE Pharma - a joint venture it has Dutch dairy giant, FrieslandCampina.

It has also completed the sale of Corporacion Inlaca in Venezuela.

Hurrell said he was confident the co-op could achieve its debt reduction goal.

Fonterra earlier announced that its net profit came to $80m compared with a net loss of $348m a year earlier.

The company's earnings before interest and tax fell by 29 per cent to $323m.

-- Jamie Gray

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