Wednesday, August 6, 2008

Dean Foods' Profits Soar 72%

Dean FoodsThere's no need to cry over spilled milk over at Dean Foods. Second quarter profits rose 72%.

With that profit increases, milk shuld be flowing like champagne!

The nation's largest dairy company reported (pdf) second-quarter net income of $48.9 million compared with $28.4 million a year earlier. Sales rose 9% to $3.1 billion due to higher milk and dairy prices.

Although we don't deny any company its just profits, we find yet another leading member of the Grocery Manufacturers Association (GMA) with record-breaking profits.

But all the while, the leaders of the GMA blame higher food prices on the backs of American farmers and supporters of biofuels.

Now THAT"S something to cry about.

Source: Dean Foods

Food Before Profit

Friday, August 1, 2008

Kraft's Krafty Profits

Kraft Foods, Inc.Kraft Foods reported its second-quarter profits rose nearly 4%.

The consumer food maker said this week that its profit rose to $732 million, or 48 cents per share, from $707 million, or 44 cents per share, a year earlier.

And Net revenues increased 21.4% to a healthy $11.2 billion.

It's amazing what raising food prices will do to revenue and profits.

What's even more amazing is that Kraft and the Grocery Manufacturers Association have been such critics of biofuels, blaming them primarily for food price increases.

But who's to blame for even higher profits?

Source: Kraft Foods


Food Before Profit

Sunday, July 27, 2008

Sick from Bad Food? Thank Big Food!

Big Food SicknessWith the recent outbreak of Salmonella sweeping the country, one has to ask, "Why Don't They Know What's Causing the Sickness That's Killing Us"?

First it was suspected to be tomatoes. Now the investigators are targeting jalapeno peppers. But still, no definite answers.

Apparently, the FDA has limited tracking capabilities to determine the source of the bad food.

And why might that be? As they say..."Follow the Money".

According to this AP/MSNBC story, Food Industry Bitten By Its Lobbying Success" the money trail leads back to the Grocery Manufacturers Association and to other leading Big Food companies who used their profits to influence food safety legislation.
The industry pressured the Bush administration years ago to limit the paperwork companies would have to keep to help U.S. health investigators quickly trace produce that sickens consumers, according to interviews and government reports reviewed by The Associated Press.
The list of companies who attended White House meetings to put pressure to water-down food-terrorism regulations reads like a who's-who of Big Food:
  • Kraft Foods Inc.;
  • The Kroger Co.;
  • Safeway Inc.;
  • ConAgra Foods Inc.;
  • The Procter & Gamble Co.;
  • the American Forest and Paper Association;
  • the Polystyrene Packaging Council; the Glass Packaging Institute;
  • the Cocoa Merchants' Association of America;
  • the World Shipping Council; and,
  • the Food Marketing Institute.
The food groups also spent millions to defend its positions:
"The Grocery Manufacturers Association spent $2.6 million on lobbing in 2003 and 2004, the period when the FDA rules were under consideration, according to federal lobbying records. The Food Marketing Institute spent $1.7 million during the period. The figures were for all lobbying by the trade groups and on their behalf."
The Big Food companies keep more profits but millions are at risk with limited ability to track the source of the contaminated foods. And we the taxpayers get to pick up the bill trying to find out.

Great. And if this had been a purposeful attack on the country, then what? Not eat anything?

For more information on food safety, check out this site,

Source: MSNBC, FDA

Food Before Profit

Friday, July 4, 2008

Poultry Producer Pilgrim Prompts Perry's Political Punch

Texas Governor Rick Perry Pilgrims Pride EthanolOr, "How Big Chicken Bought Texas Governor's Action".

In this report on, it's reported that Texas Governor Rick Perry took action to request a waiver from the RFS after a $100,000 donation was made by Bo Pilgrim of Pilgrims Pride.

The report noted the investigation by the Houston Chronicle:
"Gov. Rick Perry's request for a waiver of federal corn-based ethanol production mandates was prompted by a March meeting he had with East Texas poultry producer Lonnie 'Bo' Pilgrim, who six days later gave $100,000 to the Republican Governors Association chaired by Perry,"
It's no wonder that many American's have such low regard for their elected leaders. Rather than looking at the real issues involved with food costs, the Governor appears to have sided with a political contribution.

Source: CBSNews

Food Before Profit

Friday, June 27, 2008

Dean Foods Profits on Higher Dairy Prices

Dean Foods Ethanol milk pricesDean Foods Co. raised its second-quarter earnings guidance on Wednesday, due in part to a strong performance by its direct store delivery dairy segment. Dean Foods is a large milk and dairy products distributor in the US.

The company expects adjusted earnings for the quarter ending June 30 of at least 32 cents per share. The company had previously expected earnings per share between 26 cents and 31 cents.

Dean Foods also confirmed the company's full-year guidance for at least $1.20 per share in adjusted earnings.

What's interesting about this financial update is that the Grocery Manufacturers Association, which Dean Foods is a leading member, blames American biofuels for higher food prices.

It's clear that higher profits are playing a key part of the food inflation story.

Source: Dean Foods

Food Before Profit

Thursday, June 26, 2008

ConAgra Foods Profits on Higher Prices

ConAgra Food ethanol profitsProfiting on higher prices appears to be good for food manufacturers.

ConAgra Foods, Inc., a leading member of the Grocery Manufacturers Association, reported its results for the fiscal 2008 fourth quarter. Overall sales grew 15% and fourth-quarter net income rose 4.8%
Gary Rodkin, chief executive officer of ConAgra Foods commented about the strong results, “In fiscal 2008, we made progress in several important areas of our company, most notably pricing, the innovation pipeline, more effective marketing, and efficiencies.

He went on to say, "we have an even greater focus on successfully executing the initiatives in our core food operations, as well as a much stronger foundation on which to deliver predictable and sustainable profitable growth going forward.”
The Grocery Manufacturer Association and its members have been strong critics of America's move to biofuels. But it's clear this is just a calculated distraction to record profits and justify higher food prices.

Source: ConAgra Foods

Food Before Profit

Wednesday, June 25, 2008

Del Monte Foods' Profits Soar on Higher Prices

The food business is soaring high this year. Yet another major food company announced increased revenues AND profits.

Del Monte Foods Company reported growth in both its fourth-quarter and fiscal year-end earnings earlier this month.

As a leader of the Grocery Manufacturers Association, Del Monte Foods supports the GMA's campaign against biofuels. The GMA blames higher food costs on ethanol rather than higher energy, marketing and, apparently, PROFITS!

The company, headquartered in San Francisco CA, earned $50.4 million, or 25 cents per share, on sales of $1.04 billion for the quarter.

That's a 37 percent increase in earnings from the same quarter last year when Del Monte Foods earned $36.7 million, or 18 cents per share, on sales of $940.1 million.

For its fiscal year, Del Monte Foods earned $133.1 million or 66 cents per share on sales of $3.74 billion. Last year the company earned $112.6 million or 56 cents per share on sales of $3.41 billion.

The company also recently announced that it is considering selling its Starkist Seafood business.

Source: Del Monte Foods


Tuesday, June 24, 2008

Suit Claims Pilgrim's Pride Workers Denied Pay

Pilgrim's Pride chicken pay lawsuitLegal notices were mailed recently to Pilgrim’s Pride workers explaining their rights should they choose to join a lawsuit against the company seeking overtime pay.

According to the plaintiff's attorney in the notice:
“The Plaintiffs in this case claim that Pilgrim’s Pride does not pay its hourly chicken-processing workers for all the time they work putting on, taking off and cleaning safety and sanitary equipment, such as smocks, plastic aprons, ear plugs, safety glasses, hairnets, beard nets, plastic sleeve covers, arm guards, face masks, hard hats, rubber gloves, cotton liner gloves and metal cutting gloves. The Plaintiffs claim Pilgrim’s Pride has violated the Fair Labor Standards Act. Pilgrim’s Pride denies that it has violated the law in any respect.”
The full notice and consent forms to join the suit can be found online at the Website for Cohen Milstein Hausfeld & Toll. Pilgrim’s Pride workers with questions about the suit should call the toll-free hotline at (888) 816-4995 or send e-mail to

The notice also tells workers that they will not risk paying any fees by joining the suit:
“Regardless of whether or not you win the case, you will not be required to pay attorneys’ fees or costs out of your own pocket. The lawyers for the Plaintiffs will be paid only if the Plaintiffs win or Pilgrim’s Pride settles the case. If that happens, these fees will either be paid by Pilgrim’s Pride, or paid out of any settlement fund, or both, as the Court directs. Plaintiffs’ counsel will not ask the Court for more than one-third of your recovery. If there is no recovery, there will be no lawyers’ fee paid to the lawyers.”

Source: Cohen Milstein Hausfeld & Toll

Farmers Donate Food in Illinois

Illinois Corn GrowersIllinois farmers recently donated 2,500 pounds of pork to the Central Illinois Food Bank.

“Livestock is our number one consumer and we are happy to be partnering with them on such a worthwhile project,” said ICMB Chairman Ron Gray. “Not only does this project feed the hungry, but we are also getting excess pork out of the market which benefits our friends with hogs. This program is a win-win for everyone.”
This first delivery of food through the "Pork Power" program was paid by the Illinois pork, corn and soybean producers.

Source: Illinois Corn Growers Association

Monday, June 23, 2008

General Mills' Profit Perspective

General Mills profitsForbes offered a sneak peek at General Mills' profit outlook today. Higher input costs have caused General Mills to raise prices.

But what's interesting to note is that price hikes are much higher than increased costs:
"Higher retail prices have, so far, helped keep profits safe from the higher costs. In the company's third quarter, profit jumped 61 percent, helped by far higher price"
Seems to us that all the fuss about about biofuels is really a concerted distraction over much higher food hikes to drive profits higher.

Source: Forbes


Sunday, June 22, 2008

Food Before Profit Begins

Welcome to our new site. We'll post interesting news about world hunger, food production and international business.