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Conagra’s profit forecast beat powered by at-home snacking demand By Reuters

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© Reuters. FILE PHOTO: File photo of ConAgra Foods production facility in Oakdale

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(Reuters) – Conagra Brands (NYSE:) Inc on Thursday forecast current-quarter profit above Wall Street estimates, betting that demand for its frozen dinners, cake mixes and gourmet popcorns will continue as the COVID-19 crisis lingers on.

Demand for packaged foods with long shelf lives, including frozen vegetables and cake mixes, has surged, as shuttered restaurants and the fear of contracting the virus forced shoppers into stocking their pantries and cooking at home more often.

The company, known for Slim Jim beef jerky and Birds Eye frozen vegetables, said it has seen a sustained increase in demand from its retail customers so far in the third quarter.

The company forecast adjusted earnings between 56 cents and 60 cents for the third quarter, largely above the estimates of 57 cents, according to IBES data from Refinitiv.

For the second quarter ended Nov. 29, organic sales rose 8.1% driven by more consumers eating snacks at home.

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