US bakery Flowers Foods today (19 August) posted an 11.3% rise in net income for the second quarter to reach US$30.3m despite a drop in sales.

The company saw sales decrease 1.1% to $607.7m, which it attributed to a negative pricing mix of 3.5%, however this was nearly offset by a 1.9% volume increase and a 1% increase due to acquisitions.

It said the volume increase was primarily driven by Nature’s Own soft variety bread and Nature’s Own sandwich rounds in the branded retail channel and the cake category in the private label retail channel.

During the first half, net profit grew 9.9% to $74.4m, while sales decreased 1.3% to $1.4bn, mainly due to a negative pricing mix of 2.9%. It said volume was flat against the first half of 2009.

Company chairman and CEO George Deese said: “”Even though sales for the quarter declined, we achieved volume increases in both operating segments. Since the beginning of the year, our sales trend has improved steadily as we executed our strategy to introduce new products and develop new business. In the most recent weeks, that trend has further improved, giving us confidence in our revised sales guidance.”