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Profit at Archer Daniels Midland drops 60 percent in fiscal 1Q

Archer Daniels Midland Co. reported its fiscal first quarter earnings sank 60 percent to $182 million from a year earlier as it absorbed charges related to its planned divestiture of Mexico-based tortilla maker Gruma and its U.S. ethanol exports weakened.

Decatur-based ADM’s earnings per share were 28 cents, down from 68 cents per share.

Net sales dipped to $21.8 billion, down from $21.9 billion.

The company’s BioProducts business, which includes ethanol sales, fell $179 million to a loss of $26 million.

Its Oilseeds Processing profit increased 53 percent to $336 million, while Agricultural Services profit fell 76 percent to $78 million.

Corn Processing profit fell 63 percent to $68 million.

“Our first quarter segment results were mixed,” ADM Chairman and Chief Executive Officer Patricia Woertz said in a statement. “Oilseeds performance was strong, the ethanol industry experienced sustained negative margins, and Agricultural Services managed well through a complicated quarter, challenged by the drought.”

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