Maple Leaf Foods Inc. reported its financial results for the first quarter ending March 31, 2018. The company reported sales volume growth across the business, except in fresh pork with temporary supply interruption. The company’s sales of $817.5 million represents a 0.8 percent increase from last year’s Q1 results.

"As anticipated, it was a more challenging start to the year in 2018 although we were pleased to have delivered EBITDA margins of 10.1% in these conditions, which reflects our balanced portfolio, brand strength and value-added product mix," said Michael H. McCain, President and CEO. "We realized excellent commercial and operating gains in the prepared meat portfolio, offset by the much-anticipated headwinds of market conditions. We are now launching the most extensive food and brand renovation in our history, which will be one of our strategic growth foundations for years to come."

Sales in the first quarter increased 0.8% to $817.5 million, or 2.4% after adjusting for the adoption of a new accounting standard, foreign exchange, and acquisitions. Sales were driven by prepared meats, which benefited from innovation and the Company's expansion in the U.S. market as well as pricing taken in fall of 2017. The Lightlife and Field Roast brands contributed to sales increases in the quarter. Sales in value-added fresh pork were impacted by lower market values and a transitory reduction in hog supply from PEDv in 2017. 

Adjusted Operating Earnings were $52.8 million compared to $59.0 million in the first quarter of 2017. Positive trends and commercial performance in the underlying business were offset by market conditions in pork markets which were materially below prior year. First quarter earnings benefited from improvement in prepared meats related to volume growth, strong margins and increased supply chain efficiency. Performance in value-added poultry and pork and plant protein also contributed to our earnings.

Net earnings for the first quarter were $27.9 million ($0.22 per basic share) compared to $30.1 million ($0.23 per basic share) in the first quarter of 2017.The decrease in net earnings was consistent with factors noted above and partially offset by lower restructuring costs.

Source: Maple Leaf Foods