Second quarter Retail Food net sales were $5.20 billion compared to $5.61 billion last year, a decline of 7.3 percent, primarily reflecting identical store sales of negative 4.3 percent and the disposition of a majority of the Company’s retail fuel centers which contributed $158 million in sales in the second quarter of fiscal 2012.
Retail Food operating loss was $83 million and included $142 million in net pre-tax charges related to intangible and other asset impairments, previously announced store closures and employee-related costs which were partially offset by the gain on sale of assets in conjunction with the previously announced store closures. Excluding these items, Retail Food operating earnings were $59 million, or 1.1 percent of net sales. For the second quarter of fiscal 2012, Retail Food operating earnings were $127 million, or 2.3 percent of net sales last year. The change in Retail Food operating earnings as a percent of net sales was primarily due to increased promotional activity, an increased level of continued investment in competitive pricing, and the deleveraging impact of negative identical store sales which were partially offset by cost reduction initiatives and a lower LIFO charge.
Second quarter Save-A-Lot net sales were $973 million compared to $972 million last year, an increase of 0.1 percent, reflecting the benefit from 47 net new stores being operated at the end of the second quarter of fiscal 2013, offset by the impact from network identical store sales of negative 3.7 percent.
Save-A-Lot operating earnings in the second quarter were $18 million and included $16 million in pre-tax charges primarily related to store closure costs. Excluding these costs, Save-A-Lot operating earnings were $34 million, or 3.5 percent of net sales. For the second quarter of fiscal 2012, Save-A-Lot operating earnings were $50 million, or 5.1 percent of net sales last year. The decline in operating earnings as a percent of net sales was primarily attributable to lower gross margin rates attributable to competitive price investments and additional administrative costs to support its growth strategy.