HOUSTON – Sysco Corp. reported net income declined to $286.6 million, or 49 cents per share, for its 2013 fiscal first quarter ended Sept. 29, 2012. This compares to net income of $302.7 million, or 51 cents per share during the same period last year.

Sysco’s sales in the first quarter were the highest quarter on record at $11.1 billion, up 4.7 percent from $10.6 billion in the comparable 2012 period.

“Solid sales growth and effective overall operating expense management contributed to increased adjusted EPS in our underlying business for the quarter. Volume gains drove our top line growth as food cost inflation moderated from the historically high levels experienced in recent quarters,” said Bill DeLaney, Sysco's president and chief executive officer.

“Regarding our multiyear business transformation initiative, we recently achieved a significant milestone by successfully and simultaneously deploying for the first time our new technology platform in two operating companies.”

Meat and poultry categories drove food cost inflation, which was 2.2 percent in the quarter. This was partially offset by deflation in the dairy category, according to Sysco. In addition, sales from acquisitions within the last 12 months increased sales by 0.5 percent and the impact of changes in foreign exchange rates for the first quarter decreased sales by 0.3 percent.

Operating income declined $31 million to $479 million in the first quarter compared to operating income in the prior year, according to the company. Excluding certain items and business transformation expenses, adjusted operating income increased 2.0 percent.