Cargill sees earnings rise

5 Oct 2016

Cargill has reported financial results for the quarter ended Aug. 31, 2016. Adjusted operating earnings rose 35% to $827 million, while net earnings were $852 million, up 66% from $512 million a year ago.

Cargill sees earnings rise

Cargill has reported financial results for the fiscal 2017 first quarter ended Aug. 31, 2016. Adjusted operating earnings rose 35% to $827 million in the first quarter, compared with $611 million in the year-ago period. Net earnings were $852 million, up 66% from $512 million a year ago. The variance between adjusted and net earnings was largely a function of timing differences related to inventory, derivatives and hedging. Revenues were $27.1 billion, essentially even with last year’s $27.5 billion.

“We posted a strong start to the new fiscal year,” said David MacLennan, Cargill’s chairman and chief executive officer. “We’ve been charting a new path to higher performance, and it’s rewarding to see the many changes we’ve made resulting in gains across much of the company.” He noted that recent acquisitions have brought in new capabilities alongside Cargill’s continuous work to optimize plant efficiency, supply chains and cost structure. “These actions are making us more competitive and equipping us to serve a broadening range of customer needs.”

Improved earnings in starches and sweeteners, and edible oils lifted segment earnings in Food Ingredients & Applications. Cocoa and chocolate products contributed to the upturn, though earnings were restrained by this season’s shortage of mid-crop cocoa beans in Ghana. Salt earnings were flat, with good performance in salts for food and other applications offset by less demand for road salt and deicing products in the current period. The segment’s flour business in Argentina was sold to Molinos Cañuelas, a local, family-owned retail food company with a flour business of its own.

MacLennan emphasised Cargill is keeping its focus on three connected priorities: sustainability, food security and nutrition. The August debut of the Midwest Row Crop Collaborative shows, he said, how Cargill can bring unique insights to advancing sustainable agriculture, noting that industry and conservation leaders came together in this collaborative to bring sustainability work to a larger scale. In its launch, the MRCC announced it will support and build out current programs that seek to improve soil health and water quality in Illinois, Iowa and Nebraska. “Cargill is committed to the success of the MRCC,” said MacLennan, “because we believe that sustainability programs like this will benefit agricultural supply chains from end to end.”