Gross profit for Land O’Lakes layer division was up 72.3 percent, with net sales up 11.3 percent for the first quarter ended March 31 compared to the same quarter in 2006, the Arden Hills, Minn., cooperative says in its first quarter’s report. Net sales of $119.9 million were up $12.2 million, while gross profits of $14.3 million were up $6 million. Gross profit as a percentage of net sales was 11.9 percent for the first quarter 2007 compared to 7.7 percent in 2006.


The company says that the increase in net sales was primarily driven by higher egg prices for the three months compared to the same period in 2006. The average quoted price based on the Urner Barry Midwest Large market increased to $1.06 per dozen in 2007 compared to 77 cents in 2006. Partially offsetting this increase, the company says, was the sale of liquid egg operations in June 2006, which resulted in a decrease in sales of $25.8 million. Also partially offsetting the impact of higher egg pries were increased feed costs and unrealized hedging losses for the three months.