Canadian cheese-maker Saputo will see its earnings improve despite a drop in third-quarter profits, an analyst claimed today (5 February).

TD Newcrest analyst Michael Van Aelst said that the question will not be whether earnings will recover to new highs but when.

"The challenges facing Saputo are not internal, they are driven by global and US dairy market fundamentals that have led to a sudden collapse in cheese and by-product prices," van Aelst said. "Saputo is navigating through these challenges extremely well in our view and should emerge in a much stronger competitive position."

Saputo said yesterday that, for the period ended 31 December, net earnings totalled C$57.8m (US$47m), a fall of 29.5%.

Consolidated revenues for the quarter amounted to C$1.52bn, an increase of C$240m or 18.8%. Revenues were helped by the Alto Dairy Co-operative acquisition in April and the weakened Canadian dollar.