Fourth quarter sees ”improved top and bottom-line performance” while overall net loss for the full year is lower

Mission Produce reported on its fourth quarter (Q4) and full-year results at the end of December, while CEO Steve Barnard also looked ahead to the coming year.

Mission avocados sticker retail

For the final quarter of 2023, ended 31 October, total revenue increased 8 per cent to US$257.9m compared to the same period last year, the group confirmed.

This was driven by an 8 per cent increase in average per-unit avocado selling prices, partially offset by a 4 per cent decrease in avocado volume sold.

Net income for the quarter was US$4m compared to a net loss of US$42m last year, which included a non-cash charge of US$49.5m related to goodwill impairment.

Adjusted net income came in at US$7.5m, down from US$9.2m in the fourth quarter of 2023, while adjusted EBITDA remained fairly flat at US$17.3m.

“Our fourth quarter results saw improved top and bottom-line performance driven by strength in our marketing and distribution segment, further supported by substantial growth in our emerging blueberries segment,” said Steve Barnard, CEO of Mission.

”However, continued weather-related challenges in Peru resulted in quality issues towards the latter end of the season and lower than expected volumes, both of which impacted our international farming segment performance.  

”Because we set our fixed price contracts with customers and market allocation prior to experiencing these weather-related events, we were limited in our ability to generate the seasonal increase in adjusted EBITDA that we would typically expect in the fourth quarter,” he explained.

Full year

For the full 12 months, Mission said that total avocado volume sold increased by 12 per cent to 654.4m pounds, and total revenue was US$953.9m compared to US$1.05bn last year.

“Despite volume growth as a result of lower average per-unit avocado sales prices; lower pricing and higher avocado volume sold in the current year were driven by higher industry supply out of Mexico in the current year after experiencing supply limitations in the previous fiscal year,” the group stated.

Mission reported on a net loss of US$2.8m for the year, compared to a loss of US$34.6m in 2022.

Adjusted net income was US$13.3m, down from US$18.5m, and adjusted EBITDA increased 2 per cent to $48.4m.

Owned exportable avocado production volume decreased 9 per cent to 107m pounds for the 2023 harvest season, with volume negatively impacted by weather-related events.

Outlook for 2024

“Looking ahead to 2024, we expect to realise improved pricing in our international farming segment given adjustments we’ve made to our marketing strategy following this past year’s experience, which we believe will create a more constructive backdrop for our international farming segment performance next year,” Barnard noted.

”In the meantime, we remain intensely focused on advancing cost control measures and reallocating resources to maximise efficiency.

”We believe that with anticipated improvements in operating cash flow and declining capital expenditure needs, we are in a great position to enhance our capital structure in the year ahead,” he outlined.

”We continue to focus our organisation’s efforts on supporting long-term consumption growth trends globally and providing the market with consistent year-round supply of avocados on a global scale – a capability that is unique to Mission Produce.

”We are also excited about accelerating and advancing our burgeoning mango programme and seeing the continued success of our blueberries segment,” Barnard added.