Fresh Del Monte Produce Inc. said Tuesday it had net income of $35.2 million, or 68 cents a share, in the third quarter, up from $28.5 million, or 54 cents a share, in the year-earlier period. Adjusted per-share earnings came to $1.17, well ahead of the FactSet consensus of 52 cents. Sales rose to $950.2 million from $936.1 million, matching the FactSet consensus. Chief Executive Mohammed Abu-Ghazaleh said growth was driven by sales of avocado and fresh-cut and pineapple product lines, along with improvement in banana pricing and lower commodity costs. Avocado sales grew 47% to $67.1 million, while gold pineapple sales rose 3% to $123 million and fresh-cut pineapple sales rose 7% to $134.6 million. Shares were not yet active in premarket trade, but are up 55% in the year to date, while the S&P 500 has gained 4%.
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