Fresh Del Monte Produce Beats Estimates On Avocado Growth

Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. said it had net income of $28.5 million, or 54 cents per share, the third quarter, up from $19.9 million, or 35 cents, for the same period last year. Adjusted earnings were 57 cents per share up from 35 cents per share the prior year. The FactSet consensus was 29 cents per share. Sales were $936.1 million compared with $884.6 million for the same period last year. The FactSet consensus estimate was $927.4 million. Avocados are becoming one of the company's fastest growing categories, Chief Executive Mohammad Abu-Ghazaleh said in a statement. Sales of avocadoes increased 38% to $45.5 million compared with 2014. The company was negatively impacted by "higher banana production and procurement costs, unfavorable foreign exchange rates, and lingering effects of a tough Chilean season," Abu-Ghazaleh said. Sales of bananas increased to $425.2 million from $423.8 million in 2014. Fresh Del Monte shares are up 25.5% for the year so far. The S&P is up 0.6% for the same period.

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