Calavo Growers saw its net income rise by millions, pulling the company out of the red, even as it reported that its first-quarter revenue shrank by 19%.
The Santa Paula-based avocado distributor reported net income of $5.3 million, or 30 cents per diluted share, for the first quarter of 2021, when it released its quarterly earnings on March 10. One year earlier, the company had a net loss of $900,000, or 5 cents per diluted share.
That’s in spite of the company’s total revenue being lower in the face of higher avocado volumes, lower wholesale prices and lower revenue from the company’s Renaissance Food Group and Foods segments. Revenue was $220.6 million in the first quarter, down 19% from a year earlier.
“Our first quarter results reflect a continuation of trends that we experienced in the fourth quarter of last year,” James E. Gibson, CEO of Calavo Growers, said in a news release. “Market demand for avocados is increasing, albeit at a slower pace due to the pandemic, and supply remains plentiful, given the strong crop out of Mexico. These dynamics weighed on prices, which on average, were down 14% year-over-year. However, we delivered higher avocado gross margins in the quarter, as we did a good job of managing our pricing spread and sales mix.”
Calavo Growers also paid $1.15 per share dividend to investors, a total of $20.3 million and an increase of 4.5% from last year’s first quarter.