Land O'Lakes suffers $29.9 million loss in quarter

by Eric Schroeder
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ARDEN HILLS, MINN. — Land O’Lakes, Inc. suffered a loss of $29,966,000 in the third quarter ended Sept. 30, which compared with income of $7,304,000 in the same period a year ago. Sales for the quarter, meanwhile, rose 17% to $2,767,598,000 from $2,368,401,000.

For the year’s first nine months, net earnings attributable to Land O’Lakes, Inc. were $138,120,000, up 33% from $103,580,000, and sales were $9,702,031,000, up from $8,393,047,000.

“I’m pleased to report that our core brands and products continue to perform well, as measured by share growth in each of our core businesses,” said Chris Policinski, president and chief executive officer. “Our innovative new products are also contributing strongly to sales and earnings. These results demonstrate that even in a difficult economy, customers and consumers value well-known and trusted brands.”

Looking ahead, Mr. Policinski said Land O’Lakes is in a positive position as the cooperative enters the traditionally strong fourth quarter, when holiday cooking and baking enhances Dairy Foods’ results and winter weather drives feed demand.

“Over the past several years, we’ve continued to build our brands and market presence,” he said. “The consistent work we do to ensure the quality of our products, and the new products we’ve introduced, are also key competitive advantages. With these strengths, Land O’Lakes is well-positioned to perform in the very important fourth quarter.”

Mr. Policinski also noted the company is accelerating growth initiatives both in its U.S. operations and internationally.
“Even in an uncertain economy, we have been able to drive short-term earnings performance, while we invest in longer-term growth efforts,” he said.
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