The chicken producer says it lost $29.5 million, or 97 cents per share, in its fiscal fourth quarter ended Oct. 31. That compares to a profit of $74 million, or $2.08 per share, in the same quarter of 2010.
Sales rose 6 percent to $560 million from $529 million a year ago.
For the year, the Laurel, Miss., firm lost $188.4 million, or $5.74 per share, compared to a 2010 profit of $209.8 million, or $6.07 per share.
Analysts polled by FactSet Research predicted Sanderson Farms would lose 60 cents in the quarter. One item hurting results was a $9 million inventory markdown.