ARDEN HILLS, MINN. — Stronger results in the company’s dairy foods business and feed operations buoyed third-quarter earnings at Land O’Lakes, Inc. Net income in the third quarter ended Sept. 30 was $17,941,000, which compared with a loss of $29,966,000 in the same period a year ago. Net sales were $2,965,218,000, up 7% from $2,767,598,000.

“We are pleased to report a strong third quarter, driven by significantly improved results in dairy foods and sharply higher earnings in our feed operations, Purina Animal Nutrition,” said Chris Policinski, president and chief executive officer of Land O’Lakes. “Year-to-date performance has also been bolstered by strong sales and earnings in our crop inputs business, WinField, which is on track for a record year.”

Mr. Policinski attributed the overall favorable results to several strategies in place at Land O’Lakes, including: growth through acquisitions, brand building and innovation; building strong, valued relationships with customers and cooperative members; and “Total Margin Management,” an enterprise-wide focus on growing revenues, reducing costs, improving efficiencies and streamlining processes.

For the nine months ended Sept. 30, net income totaled $149,838,000, up 8% from $138,120,000 in the same period a year ago. Net sales were $10,428,898,000, up from $9,702,031,000.