UPDATE 1-Flowers Foods Q1 profit beats estimates

Tue May 25, 2010 7:21am EDT

* Q1 EPS $0.44 vs est $0.42

* Q1 rev $795 mln vs est $815.3 mln

May 25 (Reuters) - Flowers Foods Inc (FLO.N) posted a better-than-expected quarterly profit on Tuesday, as lower costs of raw materials like flour helped the baker boost its margins, offsetting weak sales.

Flowers Foods, which competes with Sara Lee SLE.N, George Weston (WN.TO) and Interstate Bakeries, also said its core Nature's Own branded products did well during the quarter.

Net income at the company, which produces, markets, and distributes breads, buns, rolls, and other baked goods to retail and foodservice customers, rose about 9 percent to $40.7 million, or 44 cents a share.

Revenue fell 1.5 percent to $795.0, hit by softness in the foodservice business and lower store brand sales, in the quarter ended April 24.

Analysts, on average, were looking at earnings of 42 cents a share, on revenue of $815.3 million, according to Thomson Reuters I/B/E/S.

Shares of the Thomasville, Georgia-based company closed at $26.00 Monday on the New York Stock Exchange. (Reporting by Nivedita Bhattacharjee in Bangalore; Editing by Aradhana Aravindan)