Sales Increase Of 32% Compared to First Quarter 2000. Sales Up 8% vs. Fourth Quarter 2000.

Monterey Pasta Company (Nasdaq:PSTA) yesterday reported net income for the quarter ended April 1, 2001 of $1,225,000, or $0.09 per share, on net revenues of $14,732,000, based on 14.2 million diluted shares outstanding. This compares with a net income of $1,094,000 for the quarter ended March 26, 2000, which resulted in earnings of $0.08 per share, on net revenues of $11,156,000, based on 13.6 million diluted shares outstanding. The 2001 net income number reflects full taxation for book purposes (approximately 39%), while the 2000 net income number includes only nominal taxation (approximately 6%). The Company’s cash tax liability for 2001 is expected to be less than 10% of net income because of deferred tax assets, principally related to the expected benefit from utilization of net operating loss carryforwards.

Commenting on the results, Lance Hewitt, chief executive officer and president, said, “In reporting our sixteenth consecutive profitable quarter, we also are pleased to report records in sales, operating profit, and EBITDA (Earnings before Interest, Taxes, Depreciation, and Amortization). Our sales increased 32% versus the first quarter of 2000, and operating profit increased 63% versus the same quarter. EBITDA was $2.35 million compared with $1.52 million realized in first quarter 2000. These excellent results were accomplished in spite of increased energy costs.”

“The sales records,” continued Hewitt, “are based on growth with existing customers, the continued success of our national expansion strategy, and the introduction of new products, particularly calzones and borsellinis, which are quickly gaining national distribution.”

Stephen L. Brinkman, chief financial officer, commented, “The $2.3 million in First Quarter EBITDA allowed us to continue to operate without bank borrowing, and fund all capital expenditures from operating cash flow. Return on equity continued to be strong at 33%, and we remain pleased with the strength of our balance sheet.”

Founded as a regional brand, Monterey Pasta now has national distribution in over 6,100 retail and club stores throughout the United States and selected regions of Canada. Monterey Pasta manufactures USDA inspected, healthy, fresh gourmet refrigerated fresh pasta and sauces at an integrated corporate headquarters and manufacturing facility in Salinas, (Monterey County) Calif.

This press release contains forward-looking statements that involve a number of uncertainties and risks that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements. Risks that could cause actual results to differ materially from those discussed in the forward-looking statements, include the impact of the California energy crisis, the ability to retain key personnel and management, the risks inherent in food production, and intense competition in the market in which the Company competes. Future projections are based on the assumption that we will continue to sell in existing retail and club stores and will continue to add new stores. For additional information regarding these and other risks, please read the Company’s Annual Report on Form 10-K for the year ended December 31, 2000.

                        MONTEREY PASTA COMPANY

(000’s except earnings per share numbers)

First Quarter Ended
April 1, 2001 March 26, 2000
—————— ——————-

Net revenues 14,732 11,156
Cost of sales 9,014 7,032
—————— ——————-

Gross profit 5,718 4,124
Selling, general and
administrative expenses 3,768 2,932
—————— ——————-
Operating income 1,950 1,192

Gain on disposition of assets 18 —

Other income (expense), net (2) 4

Interest income (expense), net 26 (27)
—————— ——————-

Income before provision for
income taxes 1,992 1,169

Provision for income taxes (767) (75)
—————— ——————-

Net income 1,225 1,094
—————— ——————-

Basic and diluted income per
common share 0.09 0.08

Primary shares outstanding 13,322,114 13,048,111

Diluted shares outstanding 14,176,883 13,619,031