US store-branded foods maker Ralcorp Holdings has reported a quarterly loss, hit by a charge to reflect the lower value of its syrup, sauces and jelly business.

The St Louis, Missouri-based company posted a loss of US$38.7m, or $1.34 per share, for the fourth quarter to 30 September, compared with a profit of $8.3m, or 25 cents a share, a year earlier, reported Reuters.

Ralcorp said its net sales for the fourth quarter were $329.4m, compared to $326.8m a year earlier.

For the full year, sales rose to $1.30bn from $1.28bn in the year-ago period. Full-year net earnings were $7.4m, compared to $53.8m in the previous year.

Earlier this week Ralcorp announced that it had agreed to purchase frozen baked foods firm Bakery Chef from an investment group led by private equity firm Wind Point Partners.