Campbell Baking and Snacking unit delivers growth

by Eric Schroeder
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CAMDEN, N.J. — Operating earnings within the Baking and Snacking division of the Campbell Soup Co. rose 11% in the second quarter ended Jan. 30, finishing at $81 million, up from $73 million in the same period a year ago. Sales rose 8% to $526 million, which compared with $489 million in the same period last year.

“Sales at Pepperidge Farm increased, reflecting volume gains and improved price realization,” the company said. “In cookies and crackers, sales increased driven by solid gains in Goldfish snack crackers, Baked Naturals crackers, and Milano and Homestyle cookies. Strong sales growth in bakery products was driven by gains in stuffing, Swirl Bread, and the successful expansion of the Deli Flats line. In Australia, sales increased due to currency and growth at Arnott’s. Excluding currency, Arnott’s sales increased due to gains in savory crackers led by Shapes and Vita-Weat, and growth in Tim Tam chocolate cookies, partly offset by a decline in other sweet varieties.”

For the six months ended Jan. 30, earnings and sales both climbed 5% to $181 million and $1,070 million, respectively.

“This performance reflected our consistent innovation, compelling advertising and effective promotional activities,” said Douglas R. Conant, president and chief executive officer.

Overall, earnings at Campbell Soup Co. eased 8% in the second quarter, falling to $239 million, equal to 72c per share on the common stock, down from $259 million, or 74c per share, in the same period a year ago. Net sales were $2,127 million, down 1% from $2,153 million. For the six months ended Jan. 30, earnings were $518 million, or $1.54 per share, down 8% from $563 million, or $1.62 per share, in the same period a year ago. Net sales fell 1% to $4,299 million.

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