Sanderson Farms, Inc. (NASDAQ: SAFM) today reported results for the first fiscal quarter ended January 31, 2013.
Net sales for the first quarter of fiscal 2013 were $595.8 million compared with $517.8 million for the same period a year ago. For the quarter, the Company had a net loss of $6.9 million, or $0.31 per share, compared with a net loss of $8.0 million, or $0.36 per share, for the first quarter of fiscal 2012.
"Our results for the first quarter of fiscal 2013 reflect improving, but still challenging, conditions for our industry,” said Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Sanderson Farms, Inc. “While we experienced higher poultry market prices than the same period a year ago, our grain costs were also higher. Retail demand for chicken has remained steady, but we continue to see weak food service demand. We believe food service demand will remain under pressure until the national employment environment improves. While grain prices have retreated from the highs they set last August, we experienced higher feed costs during the first quarter, and these higher costs continue to affect our profitability.”
According to Sanderson, market prices for poultry products were higher during the first quarter of fiscal 2013 compared with the same period of fiscal 2012. A simple average of the Georgia dock price for whole chickens was approximately 9.1 percent higher in the Company's first fiscal quarter compared with the same period in 2012, and currently stands at a record $1.0050 per pound. Boneless breast meat prices during the quarter were approximately 5.1 percent higher than the prior-year period. The average market price for bulk leg quarters decreased approximately 2.0 percent for the quarter compared with the same period last year. Jumbo wing prices were higher by 24.6 percent compared with last year’s first fiscal quarter, and hit a record high of $1.92 per pound the week before the Super Bowl. The Company’s average feed cost per pound of poultry products processed increased 12.1 percent compared with the first quarter of fiscal 2012, and prices paid for corn and soybean meal, the Company’s primary feed ingredients, increased 16.2 percent and 46.1 percent, respectively, compared with the first quarter of fiscal 2012.