Sanderson Farms swings to loss in quarter

by Staff
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LAUREL, MISS. — Lower market prices for poultry and declining food service demand contributed to a loss during the third quarter for Sanderson Farms, Inc.

For the quarter ended July 31, the company suffered a loss of $55,683,000, which compared with income of $36,116,000, equal to $1.55 per share on the common stock, during the same quarter of the previous year. Sales for the quarter were $511,169,000, up 5% from $489,096,000.

“Sanderson Farms’ financial results for the third quarter of fiscal 2011 reflect difficult market conditions,” said Joe F. Sanderson Jr., chairman and chief executive officer. “Market prices for poultry products were significantly lower than last year’s third quarter. While retail grocery store demand has remained steady, food service demand remains sluggish and will likely remain that way until the employment market gains traction and consumers regain their confidence and return to restaurants. We also incurred significantly higher costs for corn and soybean meal, our primary food ingredients, compared with the same period a year ago.”

For the nine months ended July 31, the company sustained a loss of $105,515,000, which compared with income of $87,020,000, or $3.96 per share, during the same period of the previous year. Sales for the period were $1,418,243,000, up 2% from $1,396,320,000 during the same period of the previous year.

“Despite current market conditions, we remain confident in the long-term success of the company,” Mr. Sanderson said. “We continue to operate well and are comfortable with our growth strategy. We are on schedule at our new Kinston, North Carolina complex and look forward to the new opportunities this plant will provide Sanderson Farms, our employees, customers and shareholders.”

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