No. of Recommendations: 0
well, perhaps I can chime in here...I didn't notice DF in the MUE portfolio. I hold DF (and now WWAV) and I am also in the dairy business. I would suggest that holding DF is a good move.

But first, far as I'm concerned, WWAV got the problematic management; the selfish, egotistical empire builders. That's why I'm keeping WWAV for the time being. I would be unsurprised if Engels didn't find a way to make himself extra rich in a hurry. I'll ride that coattail.

Back to DF; that (mis)management team did an ugly roll-up over the past ten years, pasting over their sins through growth. I have watched what Dean did at street level and just shook my head. They basically gave money away, constantly, when it was unnecessary. When it hit the fan for them, smarter heads took the lead and Dean stopped doing some of those same dumb things. It was obvious to me that if Dean were to stop giving away the shop, they'd maybe keep a few bucks in earnings.

et, voila!...earnings have grown nicely over the past year. So what's the real proof in the pudding? Higher earnings and lower revenue. "Lower revenue, you say?!"

Jim, are you primarily concerned about declining revenues? You would not be alone, and that spells opportunity.

What too many fail to realize is that at the core of Dean's business, it's the USDA that sets the price. Dean is obliged to pass on higher or lower prices as they occur. Milk prices have been steadily falling for about 8 months (hence lower revenue), as DF earnings have risen over that same time.

Also, Dean has a huge portion of the dairy business; effectively a moat in many parts of the US. All they have to do is (continue to) stick to their knitting.

Two caveats; DF may reverse-split. That, in my experience, causes downward pressure on share price. Secondly; I would not personally consider buying any product produced by Dean (or White Wave for that matter). There are much better options out there.

But this is America.

Hang on to that Dean Foods, Jim. My bet is that it's going to become boring, while steadily growing earnings in the foreseeable future.

Randy
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