Dean Foods Co. announced strong first quarter 2013 results. The company reported first quarter 2013 diluted earnings per share (EPS) of $2.63, compared to first quarter 2012 earnings per share of $0.20. These financial results reflect the January 2013 sale of the company's Morningstar business, the gain of which is the primary driver of the diluted earnings of $2.63 per share and is reflected in discontinued operations, as well as the company's majority ownership interest in its consolidated subsidiary, The WhiteWave Foods Company. The publicly-held minority interest is reflected as a non-controlling interest. On an adjusted basis, first quarter 2013 diluted earnings were $0.29 per share. Excluding the company's ownership interest in WhiteWave, the company's ongoing Dean Foods segment, which includes the former FDD segment and corporate costs, reported adjusted diluted earnings of $0.16 per share.
First quarter consolidated operating income totaled $71 million, compared to first quarter 2012 consolidated operating income of $90 million. First quarter adjusted consolidated operating income totaled $115 million, compared to $119 million in the year-ago period. The Ongoing Dean Foods business segment, which excludes Dean Foods' WhiteWave interest, but includes all corporate costs, reported adjusted first quarter operating income of $74 million, a 12 percent increase from $66 million in the first quarter of 2012 on a pro forma and comparative basis.
"Our continued focus on the fundamentals of cost, volume and price delivered a solid start to the year in the first quarter," said Gregg Tanner, chief executive officer of Dean Foods, in a prepared statement. "The narrowed focus on the key drivers of the business, coupled with our Company-wide 'say what you'll do and do what you say' attitude, has helped deliver nine consecutive quarters of results at or above our guidance."
Consolidated net income attributable to Dean Foods totaled $493 million for the first quarter of 2013. Consolidated adjusted net income attributable to Dean Foods totaled $54 million. Adjusted net income for the Ongoing Dean Foods segment was $30 million.
Net sales for the first quarter of 2013 totaled $2.9 billion, compared to $2.9 billion of net sales in the first quarter of 2012. Net sales for the Ongoing Dean Foods segment, totaled $2.3 billion in the first quarter of 2013, compared to $2.4 billion in the same period last year.
Dean Foods' share of U.S. fluid milk sales volume remained relatively steady at 38 percent during the first quarter. Industry fluid milk volumes declined approximately 3.6 percent in the first quarter on an unadjusted basis, based on USDA data and company estimates. On the same basis, Dean Foods unadjusted fluid milk volumes declined 4.1 percent on a year-over-year basis. Management estimates more than half of the decline in Dean Foods fluid milk volumes is attributable to the overlap of leap year and the quality of days in the quarter. USDA adjusted volume data for the first quarter is not available at this time.
The first quarter 2013 average Class I Mover, a measure of raw milk costs, was $18.33 per hundred-weight, an increase of 6 percent from the first quarter of 2012, and 10 percent below the fourth quarter 2012 level.