COLUMBUS, OHIO — A heightened focus on the company’s food business spurred strong earnings and sales performance at Lancaster Colony Corp. in fiscal 2009. The maker of New York garlic bread and Texas Garlic Toast and Sister Schubert’s frozen bread had income of $89,086,000 in the year ended June 30, equal to $3.18 per share on the common stock. This compared with income of $37,620,000, or $1.28 per share, in fiscal 2008. Net sales totaled $1,051,491,000, up from $980,915,000. Driving company-wide growth was Lancaster’s Specialty Foods segment, which posted fiscal 2009 operating income of $145,848,000, up 64% from fiscal 2008, on a 13% increase in sales to $909,897,000. In an Aug. 20 conference call with financial analysts, Jay Gerlach, chairman, president and chief executive officer, said Lancaster heads into fiscal 2010 focused on improving productivity and reducing costs. The company will be adding Sister Schubert’s new mini pans, 8 rolls versus 16 rolls, as well as a bag version of its Clover Leaf roll. Under the New York brand, Lancaster will be launching a ciabatta garlic loaf, Mr. Gerlach added.
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