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Avocado Demand Boosts Calavo Shares

Wed, 01/08/2014 - 9:57am

(AP) — NEWS: Calavo Growers Inc. shares jumped Tuesday after the avocado grower reported improved revenue for its fiscal fourth quarter.

DETAILS: The Santa Paula, Calif.-based company's net income fell due to investments in FreshRealm, its technology business that aims to help fresh food producers, buyers and food banks connect. But its adjusted results improved on strong sales and profitability in its avocado business.

Calavo said demand is growing stronger each year as avocados more and more become a staple in American diets.

NUMBERS: Net income fell to $6 million, or 40 cents per share, from $6.2 million, or 42 cents per share, last year. Its revenue climbed 35 percent to $190.7 million. After adjusting for FreshRealm-related investment, the company earned 42 cents per share in the most recent quarter.

FUTURE: Company Chairman, President and CEO Lee Cole said that the company's "operating trajectory remains squarely on target" and that he maintains his confidence and optimism in the company's prospects in the year ahead. Cole said fresh avocado forecasts point to another strong year for supplies and demand is expected to remain high.

STOCK: Shares increased $1.19, a 4 percent jump, to $30.87 by midmorning — outpacing broader market gains.

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