Regions Hampton Roads

Smithfield again reports record quarterly profits

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Smithfield Foods Inc. reported record results in its first quarter as packaged meats profits grew and live hog prices increased.

The pork and packaged meats producer reported a profit of $82.1 million during the quarter, or 69 cents per share, up 7.6 percent from $76.3 million, or 46 cents per diluted share, during the same quarter last year.

“We are supporting our packaged meats business by boosting our sales and marketing budget to activate our brands and fuel innovation to bring us closer to our consumers,” Smithfield CEO Larry C. Pope said in a statement. “This is promoting growth and strengthening our position in many important product categories, including bacon, dinner sausage, hotdogs and portable lunches.”

Sales during the quarter increased 7 percent to $3.1 billion, mostly because of higher prices in the pork segment and higher live hog market prices. Sales volume rose in all 12 core brands of Smithfield’s packaged meats, which include Smithfield, Farmland, Gwaltney, Healthy Ones, and Curly’s.

First-quarter results included a $39 million charge associated with litigation in Missouri.

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