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MORNINGSTAR GROUP REPORTS PROFITABLE THIRD QUARTER; PAYS FIRST QUARTERLY DIVIDEND

 MORNINGSTAR GROUP REPORTS PROFITABLE THIRD QUARTER;
 PAYS FIRST QUARTERLY DIVIDEND
 DALLAS, Nov. 3 /PRNewswire/ -- The Morningstar Group Inc. (NASDAQ: MSTR) recorded net income of $1.5 million for the quarter ended Sept. 30, 1992, the company announced today. This was the first time in the company's history in which it recorded net income during the third calendar quarter.
 For the quarter, Morningstar's net sales from remaining operations were $85.0 million, an increase of 9.8 percent from $77.5 million during the third quarter of 1991. Operating income from remaining operations was $3.5 million, up 1.9 percent from $3.4 million a year ago. Third- quarter net sales (including both remaining and divested operations) were $87.0 million versus $120.6 million during the same quarter in 1991. Total operating income increased to $3.2 million in the third quarter of 1992 from $2.4 million during 1991. The company reported a net profit of $1.5 million or $0.10 per average common share outstanding during the quarter.
 James A. Bach, Morningstar's president and chief executive officer, said: "Our remaining operations continued their pattern of sustained growth paced by a 43 percent increase in our branded product sales. Hurricane Andrew negatively impacted our Florida-based Velda operation during the quarter, but we foresee no lasting impact."
 The company also announced that it had paid its first quarterly dividend of $.0375 per share on Oct. 15, 1992 to shareholders of record as of Sept. 30, 1992.
 Morningstar is a nationally prominent manufacturer, distributor and marketer of refrigerated food products. Its established branded products include: International Delight(R),a gourmet-flavored coffee creamer; Second Nature(R) a refrigerated no-cholesterol egg substitute; Lactaid(R), a lactose-reduced milk produced under license from McNeil Consumer Products Company, a subsidiary of Johnson & Johnson. The company has also recently introduced a no-fat, real dairy sour cream under the Second Nature(R) label into several markets.
 A controlling interest in Morningstar is held by an investor group led by Hicks, Muse & Co., Incorporated, a private investment firm with offices in Dallas and New York.
 THE MORNINGSTAR GROUP INC.
 (Dollars in millions)
 Periods ended Sept. 30 Quarter Nine Months
 1991 1992 1991 1992
 Sales
 Remaining operations $ 77.5 $ 85.0 $ 235.0 $ 258.5
 Total sales 120.6 87.0 369.9 317.7
 Gross Profit
 Remaining operations 17.7 18.8 57.5 62.5
 Total gross profit 28.6 19.2 91.2 76.9
 Operating income
 Remaining operations 3.4 3.5 13.9 13.5
 Total operating income 2.4 3.2 13.6 12.4
 Interest expense 4.4 1.6 13.1 7.8
 Non-operating expense .3 -- .8 14.7
 Taxes (.1) -- .7 --
 Net income (loss) before
 extraordinary items $ (2.2) $ 1.6 $ (1.0) $ (10.1)
 Extraordinary items -- (.1) 58.1 (5.7)
 Net income (loss) $ (2.2) $ 1.5 $ 57.1 $ (15.8)
 Average shares (000s) 9,251 14,953 9,102 11,418
 Earnings per share $ (.30) $ .10 $ 6.13 $ (1.38)
 Pro forma earnings per
 share for remaining
 operations: $ 0.03 $ 0.08 $ 0.23 $ 0.41
 -0- 11/3/92
 /CONTACT: Tracy L. Noll, CFO of The Morningstar Group Inc., 214-360-4777, or Roy Winnick of Kekst & Company, 212-593-2655, for The Morninstar Group/
 (MSTR) CO: Morningstar Group Inc. ST: Texas IN: FOD SU: ERN DIV


TM -- NY065 -- 2203 11/03/92 16:52 EST
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Publication:PR Newswire
Date:Nov 3, 1992
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