Cereal, yogurt, snacks lift General Mills profits

by Staff
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MINNEAPOLIS — Increased sales of cereals, yogurts and snacks helped boost earnings for General Mills, Inc. 12% during the first quarter.

For the quarter ended Aug. 30, the company posted earnings of $472.1 million, equal to 73c per share on the common stock, up 12% from $420.6 million, or 64c per share, in the same period a year ago. Sales for the quarter were $3,533.1 million, up 2% from $3,482.4 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

“We’re pleased to see continued growth in volume and net sales across our worldwide business,” said Kendall Powell, chairman and chief executive officer. “Consumer demand for our established brands remains strong, and new products are making good contributions to our sales results. This top-line resilience coupled with our continuing focus on holistic margin management has us off to a solid start in 2011.”

The U.S. Retail segment had operating profit of $614.6 million, down 3% from $634.3 million during the same quarter of the previous year. The segment had sales of $2,446.6 million, up 2% from $2,399.6 million. Overall, sales of Big G cereals rose 4%, and Yoplait net sales also grew 4%.

The International segment had operating profit of $62 million, down 1% from $62.9 million during the same quarter of the previous year. The segment had sales of $659.8 million, nearly equal to $656.9 million during the same quarter of the previous year.

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