Sanderson Farms Inc. reported results for the first fiscal quarter ended January 31, 2009. Net sales for the first quarter of fiscal 2009 were $388.9 million compared with $362.6 million for the same period a year ago. For the quarter, the company had a net loss of $6.7 million, or $0.33 per share, compared with net income of $6.2 million, or $0.30 per share, for the first quarter of fiscal 2008.
"The results for the first quarter of fiscal 2009 reflect prevailing economic conditions and reduced consumer demand for protein consumed away from home," said Joe F. Sanderson Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Sanderson Farms. "Demand for chicken products held steady in the retail grocery market, but the slowdown in restaurant traffic continues to adversely affect sales to our foodservice customers. While market prices improved during the quarter compared to where the markets stood at the end of fiscal 2008, it was not enough to offset our costs. Grain prices for the quarter were actually down sequentially compared to our fourth quarter of fiscal 2008, but were still higher than last year’s first quarter."