SunOpta post Q4 loss of US$1.3M; revenue rises 5.6% to record US$286.2M

TORONTO – SunOpta Inc. (TSX:SOY) has reported a net loss for the fourth quarter, with the organic and specialty foods supplier citing a contingency loss of more than US$5 million as the reason.

The Brampton, Ont.,-based company says its net loss in the three months ended Dec. 28 was US$1.3 million or two cents per diluted share, versus a profit of US$4.4 million or seven cents per diluted share in the comparable 2012 period.

Revenue in rose 5.6 per cent to a record US$285.2 million from US$$270.1 million in the comparable 2012 period, with the increase driven by continued growth in consumer packaged categories and increased demand for organic raw materials, which more than offset the effect of lower commodity prices.

During the fourth quarter, the company’s Allentown, Pa., pouch facility experienced downtime and costs associated with a customer initiated voluntary product recall, including delays in shipment of finished product in November and December.

“As the recall is still under investigation, the company cannot be reasonably assured that certain receivable balances will be collected or that unshipped finished product inventory will be delivered,” it said in an earnings report issued after markets closed Tuesday.

“As a result the company recognized a loss contingency during the fourth quarter in the amount of $5.2 million, or $3.2 million after tax, which equates to approximately five cents per diluted share.”

On the Toronto Stock Exchange, SunOpta shares closed up 26 cents, or 2.43 per cent, at C$10.96 on Tuesday.