Sanderson Farms Inc. announced that its board of directors has declared a regular quarterly cash dividend of US$0.20 per share payable October 15, 2013, to stockholders of record on October 1, 2013. This represents a new annual dividend rate of US$0.80 per share. Payment of the regular quarterly dividend will remain subject to board approval each quarter.
In other action, the board of directors approved the commencement of construction of Sanderson Farms' new poultry complex in Palestine, Texas, to start on October 1, 2013. The company previously announced the selection of this location on February 14, 2013, but plans for construction had been on hold due to uncertainty surrounding grain prices, as well as other contingencies including obtaining Board approval to move forward with the project.
The new complex will consist of a feed mill, hatchery, poultry processing plant and waste water facility. At full capacity, the Palestine facility will process 1.250 million head of chickens per week for the big bird deboning market.
"We are very pleased the board has authorized an increase in our dividend rate and granted final approval to commence construction of our next poultry complex," commented Joe F. Sanderson, Jr., chairman and chief executive officer of Sanderson Farms. "Our solid financial and operating performance, consistent growth and strong balance sheet have allowed us to move forward on both of these actions and further demonstrate our confidence in Sanderson Farms' future and our commitment to building shareholder value."
Sanderson added, "We are excited about the new opportunities ahead for Sanderson Farms as we expand our production capacity and presence in Texas. We sincerely appreciate the support, encouragement and welcome we have received from the public officials and communities in Palestine, Anderson County, Freestone County and Austin, and we look forward to this next stage of growth for our shareholders, employees, customers and other stakeholders."