Pilgrim's reported a strong third quarter for 2013, with earnings improving 116 percent and net income increasing 275 percent. The poultry company released its quarterly results on the morning of October 31.

Pilgrim's reported earnings of $222.5 million, an increase of 116 percent compared to the $103 million generated in third quarter of 2012. Its net income of $160.9 million reflected an improvement of 275 percent, compared to the $42.9 million reported in the same period in 2012, with diluted earnings per share reaching $0.62, compared to $0.17 in the third quarter of 2012.

Net sales for Pilgrim's were recorded at $2.14 billion for the third quarter, $74 million higher than the $2.07 billion reported in the third quarter of 2012. 


"We are pleased to see continued improvement reflected in our results based on the consistent execution of our strategy. Our engagement with key customers continues to reflect the value they expect from Pilgrim's and is driving growth and success for our customers. We've also seen improvements in our margins as a result of the processes we've transformed through our commitment to operational excellence. We are close to achieving our operational improvement targets for the year and envision capturing even greater efficiencies in 2014. Our export model has enabled us to attain our goal of achieving 30 percent growth in value-added products year to date," stated Bill Lovette, Pilgrim's CEO.

Lovette said the company witnessed some volatility in the Mexican poultry market this quarter, but he believes the fundamentals of the business and growth opportunities there remain intact. Market prices in the region softened during the quarter, however, Pilgrim's continues to view Mexico as a tremendous opportunity for profitability and growth.

Cash flows from operations were $285.8 million for the quarter, enabling Pilgrim's to reduce its debt by $252 million.