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ConAgra Foods, one of the world's largest packaged food companies, reported record first quarter sales and earnings for the period ending August 26, 2001. First quarter earnings were $.36 per diluted share, representing 44% growth over earnings of $.25 per diluted share in the first quarter of fiscal 2001. Sales increased 8% to reach $7.6 billion and operating profit improved 20% to $528 million.
The company's overall performance reflects strong food volume growth, a larger portfolio of value-added products due to the acquisition of several food brands late in the first quarter of fiscal 2001, and more favorable market conditions for some business units.
Bruce Rohde, chairman and CEO, commented, "While our team is pleased with the quarter's performance and confident that we will reach the goals we set for ourselves this fiscal year, our sympathies are with those who have been affected by the horrible and tragic events that took place in New York and Washington DC on Sept. 11. Our thoughts and prayers are with families and colleagues of the victims as well as the rescue workers and other authorities who continue to work heroically in these extremely difficult circumstances. At the suggestion of our country's president, our team has approached work this week with a new determination and fresh vigor to help keep America strong."
Results for the first quarter of fiscal 2001 included a $.09 charge per diluted share from the cumulative effect of changes in accounting principles; excluding this charge, earnings for the first quarter of fiscal 2002 increased 6%.