TreeHouse Foods Inc., maker of Lofthouse cookies and other instore bakery goods, reported lower sales and earnings in the first quarter of 2018 but reaffirmed its 2018 guidance.

Net sales in the quarter for Oak Brook, Illinois-based TreeHouse fell 3.6 percent from the first quarter of 2017. Loss per fully diluted share was 60 cents, compared to income of 49 cents the year before.

Despite the declines, TreeHouse reaffirmed its 2018 guidance range for adjusted earnings per fully diluted share of $2 to $2.40.

"In the first quarter, we delivered both revenue and adjusted earnings per share above the midpoint of our guidance range," says Steve Oakland, TreeHouse’s CEO and president. "Our progress to date has been solid, and I continue to be impressed with the tremendous effort our team is putting towards the key elements of TreeHouse 2020. Our work to address near term challenges such as margin recovery is ongoing. More broadly, we are working to better position ourselves to address the evolving retail landscape."

Rising demand for private label programs should benefit TreeHouse, Oakland says. "In today's market, private label is highly relevant and is one of the keys to helping our customers differentiate themselves and build consumer loyalty," he says.