The JM Smucker Company has reported a lower income for the first quarter of its 2007 financial year, related to charges incurred through the divesture of some Canadian operations.

While net sales gained 3% to reach US$526.5m at the fruit spreads and peanut butter firm, net income fell 4% to $28.7m when compared to $29.9m in the corresponding period last year.

Smucker's said that charges related to the divestiture of the nonbranded, grain-based Canadian operations had affected net income.

"We reported good sales growth in the quarter and, despite significantly higher raw material costs, were able to continue to grow our earnings," said Tim Smucker, chairman and co-chief executive officer of JM Smucker. "We continue to implement our strategy to focus on core retail brands with the restructuring of our Canadian businesses. We expect investments in our brands to provide opportunities for continued growth."
 
The company has also announced that it plans to facilitate the repurchase of up to one million of its common shares under its previously announced share repurchase authorisation.