Sales rise at Central Garden & Pet

Central Garden & Pet, a leading supplier of seeds, pottery, insecticides and other outdoor living products, reported net sales of $485.7 million for its second fiscal quarter, an increase of 10% over sales of $441.9 million in the same period a year ago. Strong net sales growth in its garden products segment contributed significantly to the overall increase, the company said. 

Net income for the quarter, which ended March 26, was $31.7 million, compared with $31.6 million in the corresponding period of 2010. The company reported operating income of $59.6 million, compared with operating income of $60.5 million in the comparable 2010 period, impacted by rising raw material input costs and the company's continued strategic investments in marketing and brand building activities.

"Our revenues have continued to grow," said Bill Brown, chairman and CEO.  "We are especially pleased with the strong growth demonstrated by our garden business this quarter, led by our premium grass seed and our garden chemical and control products. Although our revenues grew again this quarter, our earnings were impacted by the continued rise in input costs and by our strategic investment in brand building, which enhances consumer awareness of the quality and benefits of our products." 

The garden products segment's branded product sales increased $46.2 million, or 25%, to $231.3 million, and sales of other manufacturers' products were $29.0 million, a decrease of $5.5 million compared with the second quarter of 2010. The pet products segment's branded product sales were $186.0 million, an increase of $3.2 million, and sales of other manufacturers' products were $39.4 million, relatively flat compared with the second quarter of 2010. 

Based in Walnut Creek, Calif., Central Garden & Pet is a supplier of lawn, garden and pet products under a variety of brands, including Pennington, Kaytee, Amdro, Sevin, Ironite, Norcal and New England Pottery. 

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