At Morningstar, full year 2011 volumes declined 5 percent from 2010. Excluding the estimated impact of the divestiture of a private label yogurt business in the second quarter of 2011, full year 2011 volumes increased 4 percent over the prior year. The pass-through of higher input costs drove an 11 percent increase in net sales. Morningstar full year 2011 operating income of $95 million represents a 5 percent increase over $91 million for 2010, despite the second quarter yogurt divestiture.
For the full year 2011, corporate expense totaled $187 million, compared to $208 million for the full year 2010.
"Looking ahead, we are cautiously optimistic as we enter 2012," continued Engles. "Our biggest concerns are continued fluid milk category weakness and industry pricing pressures. Our 2012 plans assume flat FDD volume, excluding the impact of divestitures. Additional category weakness would introduce incremental risk to our plan. However, we believe our actions to significantly reduce supply chain and overhead costs and simplify the FDD organization have positioned the business to stabilize and compete effectively in a challenging marketplace. Our current 2012 forecasts for raw milk costs suggest a more stable commodity environment than in recent periods. Following a decline in the first quarter, we expect relatively flat raw milk costs for the balance of the year. Any significant raw milk cost inflation from current forecasts would present a challenge for our outlook. Based on our current assumptions and visibility, we expect 2012 operating income growth for Fresh Dairy Direct to be in the low-to-mid single digits.
"For WhiteWave-Alpro, we expect continued strong top-line performance from coffee creamers and beverages and plant-based food and beverages, as we build on our current momentum with additional investment in brand building and innovation. We expect Horizon milk sales to be soft through much of the year as the industry works through short supplies of organic raw milk. All in, including an anticipated negative currency impact, we expect solid mid-single digit top-line growth at WhiteWave-Alpro in 2012.
"At the WhiteWave-Alpro operating income line, we expect another solid full-year performance. On a quarterly basis, operating income growth is expected to be heavily weighted to the back half of the year. Start up costs for the new Dallas manufacturing facility and the launch costs of International Delight Iced Coffee, Silk Fruit and Protein, and Alpro's new plant-based beverages will pressure first half profits. The incremental investment behind these product launches will likely result in flat operating income performance through the first half of the year. We expect very strong operating income performance for WhiteWave-Alpro in the back half and full-year operating income growth in the high-single to low-double digits.
"Morningstar enters 2012 with good momentum and we expect solid underlying volume and operating income growth for the business this year. However, growth will be somewhat offset in the first half by the overlap of last year's second quarter yogurt divestiture. All in, we expect mid-single digit 2012 operating income growth.
"Corporate costs will provide a tailwind as SG&A cost reductions taken in the latter part of 2011 and early 2012 drive year-over-year expense favorability. Adding it all up, we expect full year consolidated operating income growth to be in the high-single to low-double digits.
"Weighing all of these factors, we expect adjusted diluted EPS growth of between 13 percent to 24 percent, or adjusted diluted earnings of between $0.87 and $0.95 per share. For the first quarter, we expect relatively flat Fresh Dairy Direct and WhiteWave-Alpro operating income to be offset by stronger Morningstar results and lower corporate costs to yield adjusted diluted earnings of $0.18- $0.23 per share."