Brazil’s Sadia reported losses in the fourth quarter and for all of 2008, despite record sales and exports, due to strong losses on currency derivatives. 

The net loss for the quarter was 2.04 billion reais ($890.1 million), compared to profits of 374.5 million reais in the fourth quarter of 2007. For the full year of 2008, the company posted a loss of 2.48 billion reais, the first annual loss in its 64-year history.

Despite the large currency losses, net sales jumped 15.9% to 3.06 billion reais, led by an increase in frozen food products and poultry.

Sadia’s report emphasized that in 2008 it was the largest producer in the Brazilian meat sector and the largest exporter of animal protein.

Its gross sales increased 23% in relation in to 2007 with an increase in sales volume of more than 8%.

In the international market Sadia’s sales volume increased 5% to 1.2 million tons, representing 46% of its total sales, which is in line with the company’s strategy.

In the poultry sector, sales in the Brazilian market dropped very slightly in volume, 0.3%, but grew 11% in value, compared to 2007.