2 Big Food Stocks Trading Higher After Earnings Releases

Kellogg Company (NYSE:K) reported its results for the fourth quarter.  Net income for the processed and packaged goods company rose to $232 million (64 cents per share) vs. $189 million (51 cents per share) in the same quarter a year earlier. This marks a rise of 22.8% from the year earlier quarter. Revenue rose 5.4% to $3.02 billion from the year earlier quarter. Kellogg Company beat the mean analyst estimate of 63 cents per share. Analysts were expecting revenue of $2.99 billion.

“In 2011 we started to build a foundation upon which we can grow,” said John Bryant, Kellogg Company’s president and chief executive officer. “We are pleased to have again posted very strong revenue growth and we have continued to make the investments necessary for future growth. Without the impact of the compensation costs and the supply-chain investment, our underlying operating profit increased in line with the company’s long-term target of mid single-digit growth. We will further improve our supply chain in 2012, but, as importantly, we will also focus our efforts on increasing investment in brand building and launching even stronger innovation.”

Competitors to Watch: Ralcorp Holdings, Inc. (NYSE:RAH), General Mills, Inc. (NYSE:GIS), Kraft Foods Inc. (NYSE:KFT), Flowers Foods, Inc. (NYSE:FLO), The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:HAIN), PepsiCo, Inc. (NYSE:PEP) and TreeHouse Foods Inc. (NYSE:THS).

Sara Lee Corp. (NYSE:SLE) reported its results for the second quarter. Net income for the processed and packaged goods company fell to $468 million (79 cents per share) vs. $833 million ($1.30 per share) a year earlier. This is a decline of 44% from the year earlier quarter. Revenue rose 6.3% to $2.08 billion from the year earlier quarter. Sara Lee Corp. reported adjusted net income of 27 cents per share. By that measure, the company beat the mean estimate of 25 cents per share. It fell short of the average revenue estimate of $2.14 billion.

“We continue to see solid progress in our businesses as we head into the second half of our fiscal year”, said Executive Chairman Jan Bennink. “We remain on track to complete the spin-off during the fourth quarter of the fiscal year. We have closed all announced business divestitures and have supplemented our core businesses with acquisitions that will strengthen our long-term growth profile. Each business now has the CEO and CFO in place and they are assessing further changes to strengthen the organization. Finally, as we announced last week, we now have full control over the Senseo trademark and look forward to a continued partnership with Philips to leverage Senseo’s strong brand equity into new products and geographic market expansion.”

Competitors to Watch: Unilever plc (NYSE:UL), Bridgford Foods Corp. (NASDAQ:BRID), The Hain Celestial Group, Inc. (NASDAQ:HAIN), Lancaster Colony Corp. (NASDAQ:LANC), J&J Snack Foods Corp. (NASDAQ:JJSF), Kraft Foods Inc. (NYSE:KFT), Flowers Foods, Inc. (NYSE:FLO), Snyder S Lance Inc (NASDAQ:LNCE), Green Mountain Coffee Roasters Inc. (NASDAQ:GMCR), and TreeHouse Foods Inc. (NYSE:THS)

To contact the reporter on this story: Derek Hoffman at staff.writers@wallstcheatsheet.com

To contact the editor responsible for this story: Damien Hoffman at editors@wallstcheatsheet.com