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Calavo Growers, Inc. Announces Fiscal 2011 Fourth Quarter And Full-Year Results

Calavo Growers, Inc. (Nasdaq-GS: CVGW), a global avocado-industry leader and an expanding provider of value-added fresh food, today reported record revenues for the fiscal 2011 fourth quarter and full year. Despite sustained profitability, net income for the final quarter and fiscal 2011 were lower year-over-year due to a cyclically smaller supply of fresh avocados in the marketplace, as well as the resulting impact from higher Mexican fruit costs in the company’s Calavo Foods business segment.

Operating results for the most-recent quarter include those of Renaissance Food Group, LLC (RFG), which became part of the company on June 1, 2011. RFG’s results are included in the company’s Calavo Foods business segment. For the three months ended Oct. 31, 2011, net income totaled $3.6 million, equal to $0.25 per diluted share. This compares to net income in the final quarter last year of $4.8 million, or $0.32 per diluted share. Fourth-quarter revenues advanced 37 percent to $147.3 million from $107.2 million in the final period of fiscal 2010. (RFG sales accounted for $33.9 million of the revenue increase.) Gross margin narrowed to $13.4 million, or 9.1 percent of total revenues, from $14.3 million, equal to 13.3 percent of total revenues, in last year’s fourth quarter.

Net income for the fiscal year ended Oct. 31, 2011 was $11.1 million, equal to $0.75 per diluted share, on a 31 percent increase in revenues to $522.5 million. This compares to net income of $17.8 million, or $1.22 per diluted share, on revenues of $398.4 million reported in fiscal 2010. Gross margin in the most-recent year declined to $42.9 million, or 8.2 percent of total revenues, from $51.5 million, or 12.9 percent of revenues, in fiscal 2010.

Chairman, President and CEO Lee E. Cole said: “Calavo confronted stiff operating headwinds throughout fiscal 2011, resulting from a unique set of factors that included a smaller available avocado supply in the marketplace, as well as a freeze that limited availability of fresh tomatoes. The diminished avocado supply had a two-fold impact: it sharply increased the cost of fruit used in our prepared avocado products and hindered the company’s fresh avocado volumes impacting the company’s unit-driven business model.”

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