LOS ANGELES — The loss of a major West Coast retailer earlier this year contributed to a decline in sales and earnings for Unified Grocers here for the fiscal third quarter, although sales trends are "improving," the wholesaler said Wednesday.
Net income for the quarter, which ended July 2, fell 9.5% to $1.2 million, while sales declined 1.1% to $969.3 million. For the 39-week year-to-date period, net income dropped 12% to $7.1 mllion and sales fell 1.5% to $2.9 million.
Unified said year-over-year sales trends are improving despite the negative impact of the loss of C&K Markets, Brookings, Ore., to Minneapolis-based Supervalu in March. C&K operates 62 stores in Oregon and Northern California. The company said the volume loss was partially offset by sales to new customers, an increase in sales to continuing customers and the shift of Easter to this year's third quarter from last year's second quarter.
According to Al Plamann, chairman and chief executive officer, "Consumers continue to be careful about how much they are spending at the grocery store, but many of our independent retailers are holding their own in this challenging environment. This is a time when being close to your customers and the community in which you operate really makes a difference."