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Sales, earnings soar at Sanderson

LAUREL — Sanderson Farms Inc. saw net sales for the third quarter of fiscal 2009 of $504.8 million compared with $466.9 million for the same period a year ago. For the quarter, the Company reported net income of $43 million, or $2.09 per diluted share, compared with a net loss of $3.6 million, or $0.18 per diluted share, for the third quarter of fiscal 2008.

The net results for the third quarter of fiscal 2008 included a charge of $1.7 million, or $0.09 per share, paid for the settlement of the company’s previously announced donning and doffing litigation.

Net sales for the first nine months of fiscal 2009 were approximately $1.32 billion compared with approximately $1.26 billion for the first nine months of fiscal 2008. Net income for the first nine months of fiscal 2009 totaled $62.5 million, or $3.04 per diluted share, compared with $8.8 million, or $0.43 per diluted share, for the first nine months of last year.

“Our results for the third quarter of fiscal 2009 reflect much improved market conditions for our Company and our industry when compared to last year,” said Joe F. Sanderson Jr., chairman and CEO of Sanderson Farms “The combination of lower costs and improved market conditions resulted in much higher margins for the quarter, and we are pleased with our performance. While retail demand for chicken remained relatively stable during the quarter, casual dining and food service demand continues to be negatively affected by weak economic conditions. Market prices for both corn and soybean meal were lower than last year’s third quarter, and we will continue to benefit from lower feed grain costs during our fourth fiscal quarter compared to last year.”

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