UK contract loss has hit Hain

UK contract loss has hit Hain

Shares in US-based natural and organic food group Hain Celestial slumped yesterday (4 February) after the company cut its profits target for its financial year.

Hain Celestial, maker of Earth's Best baby food and the Linda McCartney meat-free range, posted an earnings per share target of US$0.98 to $1.03. In November, the group issued an EPS forecast of $1.19 to $1.28.

Hain Celestial's stock suffered at the lower guidance and, at the close of trading, was down 5.6% at $14.53.

The share slump came as Hain Celestial posted a jump in second-quarter earnings after "strong" profits in North America and Continental Europe.

Net income stood at $11.2m for the three months to 31 December, compared to $8.1m a year earlier. Sales slid from $250.8m a year ago to $242m after excluding $61.4m in sales from Hain Pure Protein. The company ceded majority control of the venture last year.

Hain's second-quarter revenues also took a hit of $25m due to inventory cuts at two major distributors and the phasing out of its contract to supply fresh sandwiches to Marks and Spencer in the UK.

For the full second-quarter earnings release from Hain Celestial, click here. Check back later for coverage of Hain's earnings call.