Cal-Maine Foods achieved records in both sales and net income during its 2015 fiscal year. The company on July 20 released the results for the fourth quarter and fiscal year ending May 30.

Net sales for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015 were $403 million, compared with net sales of $371.6 million for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2014. The company reported net income of $46.1 million, or $0.96 per basic share and $0.95 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015, compared with $31.5 million, or $0.66 per basic share and $0.65 per diluted share, for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2014.

For the fiscal year 2015, net sales were $1,576.1 million, compared with net sales of $1,440.9 million for the prior-year period. The company reported net income of $161.3 million, or $3.35 per basic share and $3.33 per diluted share, for fiscal 2015, compared with net income of $109.2 million, or $2.27 per basic share and $2.26 per diluted share, for the same period in fiscal 2014.

The net income per share numbers for the fourth quarter and year to date periods for fiscal 2015 and fiscal 2014 reflect the two-for-one stock split for shares of the company’s common stock and Class A common stock, effective October 31, 2014.

Dolph Baker, chairman, president and chief executive officer of Cal-Maine Foods, stated, “Our financial and operating performance for the fourth quarter of fiscal 2015 marked a strong finish to another record year for Cal-Maine Foods. Sales for the fourth quarter were up 8.5 percent over the prior year, reflecting a 6.2 percent increase in total dozen shell eggs sold and 2.6 percent higher average selling prices compared with the fourth quarter of fiscal 2014.

“Throughout fiscal 2015, we have demonstrated consistent execution of our growth strategy with favorable results. Our sales for the year surpassed the previous year’s record by 9.4 percent, supported by strong customer demand from three major market sectors - retail, egg products and exports. We sold 1,063 million dozen shell eggs in fiscal 2015, up 4.9 percent over the prior year and a new annual record for Cal-Maine Foods. We also reported the highest annual net income in the company’s history.

“Specialty egg sales were a key driver of our performance for the year as we continued to expand our market reach. For fiscal 2015, sales of specialty eggs accounted for 19.8 percent of our total number of shell eggs sold and 27.2 percent of our shell eggs revenue. With the growing consumer demand for specialty eggs, we have also pursued additional opportunities to further enhance our product mix and offer a wide variety of healthy choices.”

Cal-Maine farms not hit by avian influenza

The recent outbreaks of avian influenza (AI) in the United States in 2015 have had a significant impact on the egg industry, reducing the national layer flock by over 40 million laying hens and pullets, or approximately 13 percent, Baker noted. That reduction of supply has driven egg prices significantly higher than they were several months ago.

But to date, there have been no positive tests for avian influenza at any of the Cal-Maine Foods locations.

“However, we have significantly increased our biosecurity measures at every location, and we continue to monitor the situation every day. We are also working closely with the egg industry associations and government health officials to identify ways to mitigate the risk of future outbreaks,” said Baker. “While AI has created uncertain market conditions for our industry, we remain focused on managing our operations as efficiently and safely as possible.”

Red River Valley Egg Farm progressing

Cal-Maine Foods in April announced a new production joint venture in Texas with Rose Acre Farms to build a state of the art shell egg production complex with capacity for approximately 1.8 million cage-free laying hens. Construction of the complex has started, and the initial flocks are now expected to be placed in November 2015. This joint venture, Red River Valley Egg Farm LLC, provides a unique opportunity to capitalize on the growing demand for specialty eggs and better serve customers who are looking for a trusted supplier of cage-free eggs, said Baker.