Archer Daniels Midland, a leading U.S. food processor and ethanol producer, posted higher quarterly profit, boosted by demand for protein meal and seed oil and improved results in its wheat and malt processing operations.
The company said oilseed processing operating profit rose on strong protein and oil demand, while corn processing operating profit fell on lower ethanol selling prices and higher corn costs.
Overall, increased selling prices due to higher commodity prices helped results, while higher sales volume, mainly of feed grains, also boosted profit, ADM said.
Lower ethanol prices have led the company to focus more on its oilseeds processing and agricultural services businesses.
ADM said earnings rose to $473 million, or 73 cents per share, in the second quarter ended Dec. 31, from $441 million, or 67 cents per share, a year earlier.
Analysts on average forecast 74 cents a share, according to Reuters Estimates.
Sales and other operating income rose 50 percent to $16.50 billion, the company said.
ADM shares were down almost 2 percent on the New York Stock Exchange in volatile trading Monday. The stock is up 29 percent from a year ago.
- AP contributed to this report.