Date: February 20, 2019
Salada Foods Jamaica Limited held its 54th Annual General Meeting today, which was hosted by the Company’s Chairman, Mr. Patrick Williams. The Chairman, in his opening remarks, highlighted that the financial year 2017/18 was Salada’s best performance in its 60-year history. Mr. Williams stated that, “not only did Salada surpass the $1 billion mark in sales for the first time, recording a turnover of $1.041 billion, the Company also posted net profits of $219.18 million, another first in Salada’s history.”
General Manager, Mrs. Dianna Blake-Bennett, provided further insight on the financial performance of the Company. Mrs. Blake-Bennett noted that the 60th year was truly historic in which Salada continues to execute its strategic initiatives- to grow exports, introduce new products in the local market to improve market share, improve factory utility and make Salada a great place to work. Notably, growth in the United States was 10% year over year, with the Northeast showing signs of recovery posting 14% growth over last year and the Canadian and Barbadian markets grew year on year by 440% and 220%, respectively. Operating profit improved grossly by 237.38% to $270.07 million, “$33.70 million of this total was a write back relating to the termination of medical benefits associated to retired employees,” Mrs. Blake-Bennett stated. Whereas, selling and promotional expenses increased due to the launch of the Mountain Bliss 876. The launch of the newly acquired Mountain Bliss 876 attained 70% distribution of the two sku’s- MB876 gold and classic in supermarkets across the island. She further mentioned that the year was not without its challenges as the Company’s bottom line was impacted by the introduction of a cess in April of USD$1.41 per kg on the importation of green coffee beans which is the main raw material in their operations. “If the cess remains, the bottom line will take a $90 million hit for the coming fiscal year,” as indicated by the General Manager.
Additionally, the performance of LASCO in the distribution of brands was exemplary and played a pivotal role in the strategic marketing and branding initiatives to maintain and grow Salada’s position as brand leaders in the instant coffee market. It was stated by Mr. Williams that, “this partnership enabled domestic sales to grow year over year by 16.7%.”
Salada had launched an initiative, shortly after the fiscal year had ended, to invest $200 million to purchase and process Blue Mountain coffee cherries directly from local coffee farmers. Mr. Williams expressed that, “the response from the farmers, Government and the general public has been resoundingly positive. If this initiative is successful, it will be part of the Salada’s business plan going forward.”
- Ginger Tumeric Instant Tea
- 100% Blue Mountain Roast & Ground
- 100% Blue Mountain K-Cups
Salada’s Outlook For 2019:
- Domestic sales continuing to grow along with strategies to enter new channels and seek out new opportunities in existing channels.
- Exports are expected to continue its upward trajectory, while capitalizing on the performance in the United States, Canada and Barbados whilst seeking opportunities in other markets.
- Continue to leverage manufacturing expertise and capitalize on the contract manufacturing segment while developing new products for future introduction.
- Social media straddled with the use of traditional media sources will remain the Company’s main platforms utilized in the execution of selling and promotional activities as the Company plans to undertake to convert brand awareness unto consumption of their products.
- Continue to lobby for the Government to ensure that a policy is put in place and to ensure that the Company’s manufacturing interest is considered.
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