By Dow Jones Business News, March 04, 2013, 01:14:00 PM EDT
By Alexandra Wexler
NEW YORK--Total U.S. orange-juice sales, by both volume and revenue, were up for a second consecutive four-week period
from a year ago.
For the four weeks ended Feb. 16, total domestic retail sales of orange juice rose 3.5% in terms of volume and 4.1% in
terms of revenue from a similar period a year earlier, despite a 0.6% increase in prices, according to Nielsen data
published Monday by the Florida Department of Citrus.
"The consumption figure is really interesting because that is a fundamental change," said James Cordier, president of
Liberty Trading Group in Tampa, Fla. "If we see one more month [of increased consumption], then I think orange juice is
back on the table."
Mr. Cordier said he expects the increase in consumption to help support futures above $1.20 a pound. "We still do
trade [on] supply and demand fundamentals]," he said.
Since January 2010, total orange-juice sales in the U.S. had been sliding compared with the year-earlier period until
the previous report, for the four weeks that ended Jan. 19, 2013. However, the current report showed a slight decline in
sales since the Jan. 19 report. Volume in the week ended Feb. 16 was 46.63 million gallons, down from 51.22 million
gallons in the previous report, and revenue was $289.61 million, down from $320.22 million.
Sales of not-from-concentrate, or NFC, juice, which is perceived as healthier and fresher than from-concentrate juice,
rose 5.9% in terms of volume and 8.6% in terms of revenue during the four weeks ended Feb. 16, even though prices rose
2.6% compared with the same period in 2012.
The average price per gallon of NFC orange juice, such as PepsiCo Inc.'s ( PEP ) Tropicana Pure Premium, rose 19 cents
to $7.31 a gallon during the same period of time.
For the four weeks ended Feb. 16, sales of reconstituted, or from-concentrate, orange juice rose 2.4% in terms of
volume but fell 2.2% in terms of revenue from a similar four-week period a year earlier, despite average prices shedding
4.4%, or 22 cents, to $4.81 a gallon.
Reconstituted orange juice, such as Coca-Cola Co.'s ( KO ) Minute Maid Premium Original, is made by melting frozen
orange-juice concentrate--the type of orange juice traded on the ICE Futures U.S. exchange--and mixing in water.
Orange juice for May delivery on ICE was 2.3% higher Monday at $1.2375 a pound, supported by forecasts for cold, but
not freezing, weather in No. 1 producing state Florida during the first half of this week.
Write to Alexandra Wexler at email@example.com.
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