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Calavo Growers, Inc. Announces Increased Fiscal 2012 First Quarter Operating Results

Calavo Growers, Inc. (Nasdaq-GS: CVGW), a global avocado-industry leader and an expanding provider of value-added fresh food, today reported higher revenues and net income for the fiscal 2012 first quarter.

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.

Net income for the three months ended January 31, 2012 rose 16 percent to $2.7 million, or $0.18 per diluted share, from $2.3 million, equal to $0.16 per diluted share, in the fiscal 2011 first quarter. Revenues advanced 29 percent to $117.4 million from $91.3 million one year earlier.

Gross margin in the most recent quarter grew to $12.0 million, equal to 10.3 percent of total revenues, from $8.7 million, or 9.5 percent of total revenues, in last year’s initial period. First quarter operating income expanded 21 percent to $4.4 million from $3.7 million in the corresponding fiscal 2011 period.

Chairman, President and Chief Executive Officer Lee E. Cole stated: “Calavo turned in a very solid operating performance during the fiscal 2012 first quarter. A shortfall in fresh tomato unit volume in the fiscal 2012 first quarter, which we anticipate being offset by increased volume in the second quarter, impacted gross margin and tempered results during an otherwise solid initial period. In our core fresh avocado business, specifically, the company did an excellent job sourcing and managing costs on fruit from Mexico to offset the lack of supply from California—a hangover from last year’s cyclically small crop. This strong supply from Mexico also is benefiting our prepared avocado business, where we are seeing an improving gross-margin picture following several quarters of being impacted by high fruit costs.

“Looking at the Calavo Foods business segment on the whole, our RFG subsidiary performed well in its historically slowest quarter, which we believe bodes well for the coming periods. By all indicators, we anticipate a strengthening performance picture across the company—both our Fresh and Calavo Foods business units—as the fiscal year progresses.”

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