Fresh Del Monte Produce
reports 'solid' 3Q results
Oct 31, 2009 2:15 PM
Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc announced financial results for the third quarter ended September 25, 2009. Excluding asset impairment and other charges, (credits), net, the company reported earnings per diluted share of $0.61 for the third quarter of 2009, compared with earnings per diluted share of $0.46 in the third quarter of 2008.
“We are pleased with the quarter’s strength of earnings, in what is seasonally a weaker quarter,” said Mohammad Abu-Ghazaleh, chairman and chief executive officer at Fresh Del Monte Produce. “Our solid performance is characterized by our team’s ability to balance operational improvements and cost savings while investing in our future. Although we anticipate weak global market conditions to continue in the near term, we are very optimistic about Fresh Del Monte’s future prospects. Our financial depth and flexibility are exceptionally sound.”
Net sales for the quarter were $766.2 million, versus $832.9 million in the third quarter of 2008. Net sales increased in the company’s banana business due to higher worldwide selling prices and strong global demand. These gains were more than offset by lower net sales in the firm’s other fresh produce, products and services, and prepared-food businesses.
Gross profit for the quarter was $69.0 million, compared with gross profit of $79.0 million for the same period a year ago. Decline in gross profit was a direct result of expected lower volume and selling prices in the company’s gold pineapple product line and higher fruit procurement costs in its banana business, partially offset by higher gross profit in the fresh-cut product line.
Excluding asset impairment and other charges, (credits), net operating income for the quarter was $25.7 million, in contrast to $37.7 million for the same period a year earlier, a result of the decrease in gross profit.
Net income for the quarter was $38.6 million, compared with $29.1 million in the third quarter of 2008, excluding asset impairment and other charges, (credits), net. The increase in net income reflects the effect of tax benefits, foreign exchange translation gains, and lower interest expense, partially offset by the decline in operating income.
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