Yoplait blended Greek yogurt and other new food items contributed to net sales growth of General Mills in the first half of its fiscal year, the food giant reported today. Haagen Dazs ice cream, an established brand, contributed to net sales growth in China, the Minneapolis-based company said in its second-quarter financial statement.
Net sales of $4.88 billion in the second quarter (the 13-week period ending Nov. 24, 2013, which did not include Thanksgiving, while last year's second-quarter results included the holiday) essentially matched year-ago results. In last year's second quarter, net sales grew 6%.
Net sales through the first six months of fiscal 2014 grew 4% to $9.25 billion. Incremental contributions from new businesses added during the prior year accounted for 2 points of the net sales increase.
U.S. Retail Segment Results
Second-quarter net sales for General Mills' U.S. Retail segment declined 1% to $2.97 billion.
International Segment Summary
Second-quarter net sales for General Mills' consolidated international businesses grew 2% to $1.40 billion. On a constant-currency basis, International segment net sales rose 5% overall. Constant-currency net sales grew 22% in Latin America, led by Brazil. Sales growth in China drove a 5% increase in Asia-Pacific constant-currency sales. In Canada, constant-currency net sales grew 4%. Europe's constant-currency net sales were 2% below prior-year results.
Through the first six months of fiscal 2014, International segment net sales grew 10% to $2.72 billion.
Convenience Stores and Foodservice
Second-quarter net sales for the Convenience Stores and Foodservice segment totaled $507 million, down 2% from year-ago levels due to negative net price realization and mix. Through the first six months of fiscal 2014, Convenience Stores and Foodservice segment net sales totaled $975 million, down 1%.
General Mills expects 2014 earnings to 'accelerate'
Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Ken Powell said, "As we enter the second half of fiscal 2014, we expect our earnings growth to accelerate from first-half levels. We like our 2014 innovation and marketing plans, which include a strong slate of new items being introduced in the second half of the year. We expect our rate of input-cost inflation to ease in the second half. And last year's growth was weighted toward the first half, making our second-half comparisons easier."