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Hershey Announces Third Quarter Results; Updates Outlook For 2012

In 2012, the Company expects reported earnings per share-diluted of $2.87 to $2.92. These results, prepared in accordance with GAAP, include business realignment charges, NSRPE and acquisition and integration costs of $0.33 to $0.35 per share-diluted. The majority of these charges, $0.23 to $0.24 per share-diluted, are related to the Project Next Century program. NSRPE and acquisition and integration costs related to the Brookside acquisition are expected to be $0.06 per share-diluted and $0.04 to $0.05 per share-diluted, respectively. Despite the impact of these charges in 2012, reported gross margin is expected to increase 120 to 140 basis points. In 2013, the Company expects reported earnings per share-diluted of $3.37 to $3.49. These results are expected to include business realignment charges, NSRPE and acquisition and integration costs of $0.09 to $0.11 per share-diluted.

As discussed last quarter, the forecasted amount for Project Next Century non-cash pension settlement charges could increase as a result of impacted employee pension fund withdrawals during the fourth quarter. Non-cash pension settlement costs are required in accordance with applicable accounting standards. As a result, the forecast for total pre-tax GAAP charges and non-recurring project implementation costs, including non-cash pension settlement costs related to the Project Next Century program, has been increased from a range of $160 million to $180 million to a range of $190 million to $200 million. The expected timing of events and estimated costs and savings is included in Appendix I, which is attached to this press release.

On October 24, 2012, the Board of Directors of The Hershey Company declared a quarterly dividend of $0.42 on the Common Stock, an increase of $0.04 per share. In addition, the Board declared a dividend of $0.38 on the Class B Common Stock, an increase of $0.036 per share. The dividends are payable December 14, 2012, to stockholders of record November 23, 2012.

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