Smithfield reports loss for fiscal 2Q

SMITHFIELD, Va. – Smithfield Foods Inc. on Thursday reported a loss from continuing operations for the second quarter of fiscal 2009 of $30 million. The company said it had a net income of $4.2 million for the quarter compared to $17.4 million for the same period last year.

The company said that operations suffered losses because of high grain costs earlier this year.

"Our pork business continued to perform exceptionally well, even though raw material costs were 15 percent higher than a year ago. These results were offset by unprecedented adverse conditions in the hog production industry," said C. Larry Pope, president and chief executive officer. "Raising costs were at record high levels as we were consuming high-priced grain purchased last summer.”

Smithfield did say it had $900 million in liquidity at the end of the quarter and had completed the sale of its beef operations for $580 million, generating a pre-tax gain of $95.2 million.

“While the next two quarters will be difficult due to record high grain costs, I am very optimistic about fiscal 2010 and beyond after these grain inventories have been worked through,” said Pope. “The operational changes we have made, and those we are planning, combined with lower supplies of all proteins, should be very good for this company.”


Source: Smithfield Foods Inc.

Sanderson has lost for fiscal 4Q

LAUREL, Miss. – Sanderson Farms Inc. reported a net loss of $51.9 million for the fiscal fourth quarter ending Oct. 31, despite an increase in sales.

The company said the results include an adjustment of market prices and the effects of Hurricanes Gustav and Ike.

Sales for the whole of fiscal 2008 were 1.724 billion compared with $1.475 billion for fiscal 2007. The net loss for the year totaled $43.1million compared with net income of $78.8million for last year.

"We experienced challenging market conditions through the fourth quarter of fiscal 2008," said Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., chairman and chief executive. "Sales increased over the same quarter last year reflecting the company's production growth, and our annual sales were a record high for Sanderson Farms. However, like others in our industry, our business was affected by a decline in demand for chicken products from food service and casual dining customers, resulting in very weak market prices for white meat.”


Source: Sanderson Farms Inc.

FSIS issues notices on imports, compliance

WASHINGTON – The Food Safety and Inspection Service (FSIS) on Tuesday issued notices about the receipt, slaughter, and inspection of cattle, bison, sheep, and goats imported from Canada and the cancellation of a directive on activity reports.

The agency said that Notice 88-08, which provided updated information about livestock imported from Canada, cancels Notice 14-07 and updated instructions for the inspection of animals with the following changes:

           Bovines born after March 1, 1999, arriving from Canada are eligible for slaughter;

           Verification of animals coming from the feedlot refers to activities involving sheep and goats only in this notice and no longer involves bovines;

           FSIS personnel are to conduct another awareness meeting at establishments that have chosen to, or that may choose to, receive ruminants from Canada;

           FSIS will no longer hold pregnant bovines and pregnant cattle and bison are now eligible for slaughter;

           Collection of fetal bovine serum from the fetuses of Canadian animals is no longer prohibited; and

           The notice identifies a new place to send the VS Form 1-27, “Permit for Movement of Restricted Animals.”

The FSIS also cancelled Directive 8000.2, “Activity Report of Compliance Program Field Offices.” Because of the Office of Program Evaluation, Enforcement and Review’s implementation of the In-Commerce System, this directive is obsolete, according to the agency.

The full text of Notice 88-08 is available at


Source: American Meat Institute