Fresh Del Monte has ‘solid financial results’

Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. reported financial results for the first quarter ended March 28, 2008. Net income for the first quarter of 2008 was $63.6 million, compared with net income of $51.6 million in first quarter 2007.

Net sales for the first quarter of 2008 were $894.9 million, versus $836.0 million in the first quarter of 2007. The increase in net sales was driven by higher banana selling prices and industrywide shortages. The company’s Del Monte Gold pineapple and non-tropical product lines, along with its prepared food business segment, also drove the increase in net sales during the quarter.

Gross profit in the first quarter of 2008 was $96.9 million, in contrast to gross profit of $99.1 million for the 2007 period.

Fresh Del Monte reported other income of $12.5 million in the first quarter of 2008, compared with $3.9 million in the prior year. This $8.6 million increase is mainly due to gains in foreign exchange rate movements versus the dollar.

"We are proud of our results in the first quarter of 2008, and we are encouraged by the progress we made in managing the exceptionally high costs that continue to affect our business," said Mohammad Abu-Ghazaleh, chairman and chief executive officer. "During the first quarter of 2008, we demonstrated that Fresh Del Monte is able to deliver solid financial results even in a tough market."

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