Smithfield Pork Profits Better Than Expected

US - Integrated meat giant Smithfield Foods has reported quarterly results that trailed those of a year earlier. Even so the figures easily beat analysts' forecasts, and showed a surprisingly large gain in pork processing profits.
calendar icon 29 February 2008
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"We enjoyed very strong fresh pork margins that were much higher than historical levels as a result of lower hog costs and strong industry exports," Smithfield Chief Executive C. Larry Pope said in a statement.

In addition to exports, the pork results were helped by the acquisition last year of smaller rival Premium Standard Farms, the company said.

The Smithfield, Virginia-based company reported earnings for its fiscal third quarter ended 27 January of $54.6 million, or 41 cents per share, compared with year-earlier results of $60.4 million, or 54 cents per share. A loss on hog production caused by lower hog prices and higher feed costs led to the downturn.

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