Capped by an extraordinary fourth quarter, Ardent Mills LLC generated record profits in fiscal 2023.
Results for the final quarter of the year were included in an 8-K filing July 13 by Conagra Brands, Inc. with the Securities and Exchange Commission. The filing included Conagra’s financial results for the quarter and fiscal year ended May 28.
Equity method investment earnings at Conagra, which encompass the company’s ownership of the Ardent Mills joint venture, were $63 million, up 33% from $47.5 million in the fourth quarter of fiscal 2022. Conagra holds a 44% stake in Ardent Mills with Cargill (44%) and CHS (12%) accounting for the balance of the milling company’s ownership.
Conagra attributed the improved profits to “favorable market conditions and the venture’s effective management through recent volatility in the wheat markets.”
The $63 million in the fourth quarter exceeded third-quarter 2023 equity investment earnings of $50.5 million and $49.3 million in the second quarter.
For the year, equity method investment earnings at Conagra Brands were $212 million, up 46% from $145.3 million in fiscal 2022.
Offering guidance for fiscal 2024, Conagra took a cautious view of Ardent Mills’ prospective performance.
“Contribution from the company's joint venture, Ardent Mills, is expected to be approximately $150 million,” Conagra said.
More detailed financial data about Ardent Mills results for the fiscal year is expected to be released when Conagra issues its Form 10-K (annual report) later this month.