Seneca profit drops 52% in first quarter

by Eric Schroeder
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MARION, N.Y. — Net income at Seneca Foods Corp., a processor of canned fruits and vegetables under the Libby’s, Aunt Nellie’s Farm Kitchen, Stokely’s and Seneca brands, fell 52% in the first quarter ended July 3 to $5,275,000, equal to 43c per share on the common stock, from $11,086,000, or 91c per share, in the first quarter of fiscal 2010.

Net sales fell 5% to $219,942,000, down from $230,528,000 in the first quarter of fiscal 2010. The company attributed the decline to decreased selling prices and a less favorable sales mix of $35.4 million, partially offset by an increase in sales volume of $24.8 million.

“The first-quarter results reflect the continuing inventory overhang in the market from last year’s bumper crops, which has required us to substantially increase our promotional activity,” said Kraig H. Kayser, president and chief executive officer.

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