Animal feed firm Ridley shows less profit

11-05-2007 | |

Animal feed producer Ridley Inc. headquartered in Mankato, Minn., showed a revenue of US$136.9 million in its third quarter, up from US$131.1 million in the same period a year earlier. The actual profit however fell to US$3.1m, US$8 million less than 2006.

“Strong results in our US feed business were offset by
sharply lower earnings in the Canadian business and weak demand for blocks,”
stated CEO Steve VanRoekel. “A combination of external factors, including
continued strength in the Canadian dollar, high feed prices, and uncertainty in
the meat industry continue to depress demand and as a result, earnings in
Additionally, “our results were negatively impacted by the
departure of several sales personnel from a Canadian business unit who have
formed a competing firm.”

Excellent results in the

Ridley said feed supplement demand “has been depressed for the
second consecutive year by weather patterns that have extended good grazing
conditions throughout the western US and western Canada.” But the US feed
business “produced excellent results” thanks to “generally favourable meat,
milk, and egg production economics.”

Weaker results in

VanRoekel said the American business is expected to remain
solid for the rest of the year, but results in Canada “are likely to remain
weaker for some time.” Ridley, along with the federal government, remains
involved in litigation brought by cattle producers hurt by international bans on
Canadian cattle and beef following the May 2003 discovery of mad cow disease an
Alberta cow. Plaintiff attempts to win class-action status “are still at an
early stage,” and Ridley said it “cannot determine what impact, if any, these
lawsuits may have.”

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