Higher pork costs are forcing Hillshire Brands to increase prices.
According to Meatingplace.com, Hillshire Brands reported decreased retail sales and lower operating incomes in its fiscal 2014 first quarter.
Now Hillshire customers will have to adjust as prices climb.
“As we’ve moved into the second quarter, we’ve begun to take additional pricing actions. While this will pressure volumes as consumers adapt to higher price points, we still expect sales trends to improve in the second half behind a robust innovation slate,” Connolly told analysts on a conference call.
Hillshire Brands CFO Maria Henry said the ongoing pork industry battle with porcine epidemic diarrhea virus (PEDv) has made a significant impact on pork and sow pricing.
“We are heavily impacted by what is going on there,” she said, also noting rising beef prices and echoing Connolly’s statement that those costs will be passed through in future pricing.
Hillshire Brands spun off from Sara Lee Corp. last June. Reuters reports that since then, Connolly has made a point to thinking outside of the box. In particular, he is trying to reach a broader and younger consumer base.
"They are the future of Hillshire's brands, so it means our brands must evolve to meet their needs," Connolly said.