This Day On The Street
Continue to site right-arrow
ADVERTISEMENT
This account is pending registration confirmation. Please click on the link within the confirmation email previously sent you to complete registration.
Need a new registration confirmation email? Click here

Greenberg: Red Flags Flying Over Boulder Brands

By: Herb Greenberg | 09/26/13 - 06:00 AM EDT

Stocks in this article: BDBD

What about the discrepancy in shipments and grocery sales? She said Nielsen doesn't include sales from the likes of Whole Foods, Costco, Trader Joe's and sales in Canada. To fill that consumption-data void, she says, "We use shipments in an attempt to capture the entire market."

As for receivables racing ahead of sales, Sacco said it's the result of acquiring and integrating Glutino and Udi's and "offering extended days across the business to align company terms."

But is the gluten-free sales trend sustainable? Or like most fads will it flame out? And with so much of its sales tied to gluten-free, will Boulder Brands be vulnerable?

"We think it's similar to organic in its day," Sacco said.

Apples and Oranges

Reality: Organic and gluten free are two distinctly different categories and comparing them really is (given the health-food nature of the discussion) apples and oranges. Still, there's no getting around it. Gluten free's growth has been explosive. But it's unclear, even as it goes mainstream, how much staying power and sustainable growth it really has.

Annie's CEO John Foraker acknowledged as much at a recent investment conference when he said that even though gluten-free products have been growing quickly, faster than his overall business, "we also are cognizant that some consumers are in gluten-free maybe for diet reasons and other things which maybe are not as sustainable."

Meanwhile, with growth comes competition. The latest entry: Goodbye Gluten from baking giant Grupo Bimbo, whose brands include Arnold, Oroweat, Sara Lee, Thomas and Entenmann's.

And if the general public winds up tiring of gluten free, they're all battling for a real market, among diagnosed celiacs in the U.S., which numbers a whopping (wait for it) 3 million people, or about 1% of the population.

Disclosure: My daughter is celiac and I've spent a tremendous amount of time with her at Columbia University's Celiac Center, including multiple meetings with the center's nutritionist.

I've researched the subject the way any parent (a journalist, no less) would. I've read. I've interviewed. I've become engrossed. To see what my daughter would be going through, I put myself on a temporary gluten-free diet, only to be chastised by the Celiac Center's nutritionist, who told me point blank that if you're not celiac you should not eat a gluten-free diet. Her reasoning is that it tends to be higher in calories and less nutritious.

Herb Greenberg, editor of Herb Greenberg's Reality Check, is a contributor to CNBC. He does not own shares, short or trade shares in an individual corporate security.

To begin commenting right away, you can log in below using your Disqus, Facebook, Twitter, OpenID or Yahoo login credentials. Alternatively, you can post a comment as a "guest" just by entering an email address. Your use of the commenting tool is subject to multiple terms of service/use and privacy policies - see here for more details.

Markets

DOW 17,828.24 +0.49 0.00%
S&P 500 2,067.56 -5.27 -0.25%
NASDAQ 4,791.63 +4.3130 0.09%

Herb's Tweets

Brokerage Partners

Select the service that is right for you!

COMPARE ALL SERVICES
Action Alerts PLUS

Jim Cramer and Stephanie Link actively manage a real portfolio and reveal their money management tactics while giving advanced notice before every trade.

Product Features:
  • $2.5+ million portfolio
  • Large-cap and dividend focus
  • Intraday trade alerts from Cramer
  • Weekly roundups
Real Money Pro

All of Real Money, plus 15 more of Wall Street's sharpest minds delivering actionable trading ideas, a comprehensive look at the market, and fundamental and technical analysis.

Product Features:
  • Real Money + Doug Kass Plus 15 more Wall Street Pros
  • Intraday commentary & news
  • Ultra-actionable trading ideas
Trifecta Stocks

Trifecta Stocks analyzes over 4,000 equities weekly to find the elite 1% of stocks that pass rigorous quantitative, fundamental and technical tests.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Trade alerts
  • Recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
Stocks Under $10

David Peltier, uncovers low dollar stocks with extraordinary upside potential that are flying under Wall Street's radar.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Stocks trading below $10
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Quant Ratings

Access the tool that DOMINATES the Russell 2000 and the S&P 500.

Product Features:
  • Buy, hold, or sell recommendations for over 4,300 stocks
  • Unlimited research reports on your favorite stocks
  • A custom stock screener
  • Upgrade/downgrade alerts
Dividend Stock Advisor

Jim Cramer's protege, David Peltier, identifies the best of breed dividend stocks that will pay a reliable AND significant income stream.

Product Features:
  • Diversified model portfolio of dividend stocks
  • Alerts when market news affect the portfolio
  • Bi-weekly updates with exact steps to take - BUY, HOLD, SELL
Breakout Stocks

Bryan Ashenberg, using sophisticated stock screening and fundamental research, identifies potentially explosive small and mid-cap stocks.

Product Features:
  • Model portfolio
  • Small-cap and mid-cap focus
  • Intraday trade alerts
  • Weekly roundups
Options Profits

Our options trading pros provide daily market commentary and over 100 monthly option trading ideas and strategies to help you become a well-seasoned trader.

Product Features:
  • 100+ monthly options trading ideas
  • Actionable options commentary & news
  • Real-time trading community
  • Options TV
Top Rated Stocks Top Rated Funds Top Rated ETFs