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After a rough start, 2010 could prove to mark a significant sales turnaround for the U.S. organic industry. Sales at UNFI, Whole Foods, Hain Celestial and other companies entrenched in organic have all been up in recent months. But will it be enough to bring the industry as a whole back into double-digit revenue expansion?
UNFI up, Whole Foods up, Hain up
A survey of companies involved in the manufacture or sale of organic products confirms that sales expansion improved in the latter half of 2010.
United Natural Foods Inc. (UNFI), the largest U.S. distributor of natural and organic products, reported on Dec. 8 that its net sales for the first quarter of its 2011 fiscal year (ended Oct. 30, 2010) spiked 19 percent to $1.05 billion compared to the same period last year. This was UNFI’s first time breaking the $1 billion quarterly sales mark.
In November, the Hain Celestial Group—a a manufacturer of numerous leading natural and organic brands, including, Earth’s Best Organic, Health Valley and Imagine—also announced strong first quarter fiscal year 2011 results, with net sales increasing 12 percent to $258 million. Whole Foods Market, one of the largest retailers of organic products, reported a 15 percent sales spike for its 2010 fourth quarter (ended Sept. 26), with revenues reaching $2.1 billion for the quarter.