Charges weigh on Pilgrim’s Pride results

by Keith Nunes
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GREELEY, COLO. – Pilgrim’s Pride Corp.’s net income for the second quarter of fiscal 2010, ended June 27, was $34,588,000, equal to 15c per share on the common stock. The results include a non-recurring, pre-tax charge of $16.9 million related to a write-down related to its former corporate headquarters in east Texas and an office building in Atlanta. The company recently moved its headquarters to Greeley. For the comparable quarter a year ago, Pilgrim’s Pride earned $53,239,000, equal to 72c per share.

Sales for the second quarter were $1,707,568,000, a slight decline compared to the same period during 2009 when sales were $1,776,813,000.

“Cost improvement in the short-term, and product mix and price in the long-term, continue to be our largest opportunities for creating value,” said Don Jackson, president and chief executive officer. “We are succeeding in bringing in new, higher-margin business in both retail and food service in the third quarter. Overall we are seeing good demand from customers, and we intend to grow our share and volume in every channel.

“Sales and volume in the second quarter increased across our retail and food service segments when compared to the first quarter. In terms of supply and demand, we are in balance with our boneless skinless breast meat, with all of that product being absorbed by our core retail and food service businesses.”

Mr. Jackson said he is cautiously optimistic about industry fundamentals heading into the second half of the year, as overall production is estimated to rise 2.7% in 2010.

“That is still well below the pre-cutback levels of 2008, and supplies at this point remain fairly tight,” he said. “Based on the current supply across all three meat proteins, I believe the industry will remain relatively strong. In general, our customers appear to be optimistic, and I believe we will see more price support for chicken as supplies remain below pre-cutback levels.”

For the first six months of fiscal 2010, Pilgrim’s Pride recorded a loss of $10,776,000. The results include a non-recurring re-organization charge of $71.2 million. The company recorded a loss of $5,170,000 during the same period of the previous year.

Sales for the first six months of 2010 were $3,350,486,000, a slight increase compared to the same period in 2009 when sales were $3,474,915,000.

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