The business posted a net year-on-year loss of R$784 million for the fourth quarter. This quarterly drop in income resulted in a R$1.1 billion loss for the entire year.
The company cited impacts from Operation Weak Flesh and its headwinds as the main driver of loss over the course of the year.
“We faced one of the most challenging times in the food industry with the commencement of the Weak Flesh Operation, which affected dozens of companies in our industry, including BRF, primarily in the international market,” said José A. Drummond Jr, global chief executive officer. “Nonetheless, the Company responded quickly and appointed a dedicated team of executives and external consultants to promptly deal with the issue, with assertiveness and transparency, particularly in discussions with the stakeholders and authorities involved.”
He set out what the company had done in response to the investigation.
“We put in our best efforts to take the required measures to mitigate any impact on our Company and industry. We revisited food quality and safety processes and reinforced our internal control and compliance areas. Accordingly, in a short period of time, BRF had already received clearance again to export to a number of markets. These measures are permanent and will be constantly improved.”
He said that the business was looking ahead. “In 2017, our company faced a number of challenges and underwent significant changes. We are confident that the manner in which we faced these challenges and the changes we implemented will allow us to place BRF in a new path of sustainable growth and profitability.
“We reaffirm our belief that the challenges we faced in 2017 allowed us to implement an important course correction, whose results should be strongly evident as of 2018. This correction should reflect substantial improvements in our financial performance, including local and global growth, recovery of margins and lower leverage ratios.”