General Mills’ pet food, treat sales down 3% in Q3 FY24

Net sales results in the quarter included declines in pet treats and dry pet food, partially offset by growth in wet pet food.

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In the third quarter of fiscal year 2024, net sales for General Mills’ pet segment, which includes Blue Buffalo, were down 3% to US$624 million, driven by lower pound volume, partially offset by favorable net price realization and mix, according to a press release from the company. Organic net sales were 3% below year-ago results that grew double digits; organic net sales were up 5 percent on a 2-year compound growth basis. Net sales results in the quarter included declines in pet treats and dry pet food, partially offset by growth in wet pet food. Segment operating profit of US$128 million was up 25%, driven primarily by cost savings and favorable net price realization and mix, partially offset by lower volume, input cost inflation and higher selling, general, and administrative (SG&A) expenses.

Through nine months, General Mills’ pet segment net sales were down 2% to US$1.8 billion. Organic net sales were also down 2%. Segment operating profit was up 10% to US$342 million, driven primarily by favorable net price realization and mix and cost savings, partially offset by lower volume, higher other supply chain costs, higher expenses, input cost inflation and supply chain deleverage.

Blue Buffalo volume sales resumed growth in early 2024

Blue Buffalo’s Life Protection formulation has resumed sales-volume growth in the United States this year, Jeff Harmening, chairman and CEO of General Mills said during the Consumer Analyst Group of New York (CAGNY) conference on Feb. 20 in Boca Raton, Florida, USA. In late 2023, volume sales had been declining by mid-single-digits for the recipe. However, throughout the beginning of 2024, the amount of the product sold increased by high-single-digits.

“The Blue Buffalo brand remains strong and our refresh ad campaign is capitalizing on the opportunity to more effectively communicate with parents on the benefits of superior ingredients found in our life Protection Formula line,” he said.

This growth in Blue Buffalo’s Life Protection recipe may be part of a larger wave of growth for General Mills’ pet foods, now that some challenges have receded. During the COVID-19 pandemic and in its aftermath, many pet food producers had trouble getting ingredients and other supplies, as well as moving their finished product from factories to consumers.

“Supply chain disruptions over the past few years have had a broad impact on the ability to service customers driving cost productivity, as well as our ability to deliver meaningful scale and our innovation,” Harmening said. “In fiscal 2024, we have increased our level of innovation versus last year, we expect to be a larger contributor to our growth as we move forward.”

About General Mills

According to Petfood Industry's top companies database, General Mills is a North American manufacturer and marketer of consumer foods and pet food. General Mills entered the pet food market in 2018 with the acquisition of Blue Buffalo. Blue Buffalo is manufactured in the U.S. through a hybrid network of owned and contracted facilities. The company's dry formulas include LifeSource Bits, a blend of nutrients and antioxidants.


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