PARSIPPANY, N.J. — New product launches benefited B&G Foods’ biggest brand in the recent quarter. The company continues to expand Green Giant into new categories, including pizza and frozen entrees.
“Our vision is to not only introduce new vegetable products in the traditional frozen vegetable category, but to help people get more vegetables in their diet by introducing new products made with vegetables, expanding the Giant’s reach across the frozen food case,” said Kenneth G. Romanzi, president and chief executive officer of B&G Foods, Inc. “We are very encouraged by the successful launch of the latest generation of innovation, such as Green Giant Cauliflower Pizza Crusts, Green Giant Protein Bowls and Little Green Sprout’s Organics. We are very much looking forward to announcing our next wave of Green Giant frozen innovation later this year as we continue to facilitate America’s healthier eating habits. And a little bit further into the future, our plans include expanding Green Giant’s presence throughout the entire grocery store.”
Financial results for the recent quarter and year-to-date period reflected the impact of the divestiture of Pirate Brands and the acquisitions of McCann’s oatmeal and Clabber Girl baking products.
For the second quarter ended June 29, B&G Foods had net income of $18,251,000, equal to 28c per share on the common stock, up sharply from $7,976 million, or 12c per share, in the prior-year period.
Adjusted net income was $24,544,000, or 38c per share, down from $25,119,000, or 38c, when excluding items affecting comparability. The year-ago quarter was significantly bogged down by the impact of an inventory reduction plan.
Net sales in the latest quarter totaled $371,197,000, down 4.4% from $388,378,000 a year ago. Excluding Pirate’s Booty, sales rose 2.2%, Mr. Romanzi said.
Base business net sales for the quarter declined 0.5% to $360,591,000, helped by an increase in net pricing that was offset by a decrease in unit volume and unfavorable foreign currency translation.
Green Giant remains the primary driver of growth in B&G Foods’ portfolio, delivering net sales growth of 8% during the quarter. Other contributors included the Maple Grove Farms, New York Style and Victoria brands. Cream of Wheat sales were relatively flat for the quarter, and spices and seasonings sales decreased due to price reductions from lower input costs, certain raw materials and timing.
Net income for the first half of the year totaled $35,042,000, or 54c per share, up from $28,523,000, or 43c. Net sales eased to $783,931,000 from $820,107,000.
For the full year, management has increased its net sales guidance to a range of $1,665 million to $1,700 million, up from the previous guidance of $1,635 million to $1,665 million, and continues to expect adjusted diluted earnings per share at a range of $1.85 to $2. Shares of B&G Foods trading on the New York Stock Exchange surged nearly 12% to a $19.97 close on Aug. 2, up $2.07 from a close of $17.90 the day before. Year-to-date shares were down 30%.