Milling & Baking News - March 30, 2004 - (Page 1)

Theinewsweeklyiofigrain-basedifoods MARCH 30, 2004 / Prince certain baking's difficulties will result in positive changes LATE NEWS WA S H I N G T O N - "NAMA is interested in aggressively pursuing a product promotion and consumer education program and wants to act quickly like the bakers to determine the level of our industry's participation," said Elizabeth A. (Betsy) Faga, president, North American Millers' Association. Toward that end, the NAMA board will meet in Kansas City April 12, Ms. Faga said. The decision to call the special meeting follows the March 17 unanimous approval by the American Bakers Association board of directors of a product Continued on Page 8 NAMA to meet on promotion SCOTTSDALE, ARIZ. - Challenges facing the baking industry are so severe and so wide ranging that the industry will be forced to change in ways that have been resisted for years, Gary J. Prince, president of Weston Foods, Horsham, Pa., predicts. Mr. Prince on March 17 became chairman of the American Bakers Association. He spoke with Milling & Baking News during the annual convention of the A.B.A. at the Phoenician resort in Prince Scottsdale. In the interview, Mr. Prince forthrightly recited the litany of problems facing baking in 2004 but he also was very upbeat about the industry's future and its enthusiastic support of a product promo- tion program (see Milling & Baking News of March 23, Page 1). In emphasizing the need for fundamental industry change to bolster profitability and investment, Mr. Prince's tone was urgent. While many aspects of the industry's situation are difficult, he said, "The positives I see are that for the first time the industry has a powerful reason to change, and it must not miss the moment!" Mr. Prince did not sugarcoat the enormity of challenges facing baking. "Health care, pensions, unfunded liabilities, these issues will not be solved any time soon," he said. "Commodity prices, I see no Continued on Page 15 I.B.C. details more woes as downward sales trend continues Kansas City Southern wins ruling in Mexican rail acquisition case KANSAS CITY - Interstate Bakeries Corp.'s search for sales and earnings growth continued in its fiscal third quarter ended March 6, the company said last week. I.B.C. released preliminary financial results for the quarter that revealed an expected net loss equal of $3.6 million to $5.4 million, driven primarily by a projected sales decline of about 2.5% from the previous year. The quarter's anticipated results include restructuring costs of about $1.5 million, or 2c per share, compared with similar charges of about $5 million, or 7c per share, in the prior year's quarter. Last week's projections followed a fiscal Continued on Page 11 KANSAS CITY - An arbitration panel has ruled that that Kansas City Southern's transaction agreement to purchase Mexico's leading railroad remains in force, despite a shareholder attempt to terminate the deal several months ago. The ruling by the AAA International Centre for Dispute Resolution means Kansas City Southern, operator of Kansas Continued on Page 11 NEWS New c.e.o. with minority stake eyes loftier heights for No. 2 bagel chain Story on Page 22 inside THIS WEEK ConAgra Foods profits up 26% 14 Ingredient Spring wheat acreage growth possible Pleased about 2003 phase-out of M.T.B.E. Week 18 26 30

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Milling & Baking News - March 30, 2004