I perused it this week, and just wanted to comment on one aspect. Company-owned land. (Vertical integration.)
Bananas: "We produced 39% of the banana volume we sold in 2009 on company-controlled farms, and we purchased the remainder from independent growers. As a result of our Caribana acquisition, on an annualized basis, we have increased our total company-controlled banana volume by approximately 27%."
1.5B in total banana sales in 2009.
"Given the complexity of pineapple cultivation relative to our bananas, a higher percentage of the fresh pineapples we sell (84% by volume in 2009) are produced on company-controlled farms. Our Caribana acquisition has increased our total company-controlled Del Monte Gold® Extra Sweet pineapple volume by approximately 29% on an annualized basis."
475M in pineapple sales.
"In terms of volume, we produced 81% of the melons we sold in 2009 on company-controlled farms and purchased the remainder from independent growers."
242M in melon sales
Total acres under production : 113,080 Compared to 103,100 last year's report.
I had never seen the actual %s before reading the report except for bananas when it was at 30%. I have to say I was quite pleased to see the company grows almost all of their own pineapples and melons. Plus the increase to ~40% in bananas was nice too.
I think vertical integration is one of the main reasons to own FDP. Growing and owning their own supply (rather than sourcing) is going to lead to bigger profits in the future as the populations grow and there are more demands for fresh fruit (especially in Asia.)
Plus the fact that Fresh Del Monte has such low debt (vs competitors) means the REALLY own the land.