Campbell Soup Co.'s most recent quarterly results suffered from weak sales of its namesake soups and higher costs for ingredients.
The Camden food company said today that its adjusted earnings for the three months ended April 27, its third fiscal quarter, were $165 million, down 8 percent from $179 million in the comparable period a year ago.
Adjusted net earnings per share were $0.43 in the current quarter compared with $0.45 in the year-ago period.
Campbell's reported net income of $532 million included an after-tax gain of $467 million on the sale of Godiva Chocolatier and a $100 million after-tax charge on the sale of certain salty snacks businesses in Australia and other restructuring moves. Last year's reported net income of $217 million included $42 million in unusual gains.
Campbell's overall third-quarter sales were up 7 percent to $1.88 billion from $1.75 billion, with most of the gain coming from price increases on its products and currency translation, which helps the company because of the weak dollar.
The company said a bright spot in terms of revenue was Pepperidge Farm, which had strong sales increases in cookies, crackers, bread and frozen foods.
Soup, which remains Campbell's main profit engine, was weak. Sales of condensed soups were flat; those of ready-to-serve soups were down 9 percent.
Nevertheless, Campbell said it still anticipates reaching its full-year target of 5 percent to 7 percent growth in earnings per share.
That effort has been aided by aggressive share-repurchases. In the first nine months of its fiscal year, Campbell bought back 12.7 million shares for $435 million.