Adjusted EBIT of $22.6 million was $8.3 million lower when compared to the same quarter last year due to the decrease in export volume against U.S. special quotas and to the lower adjusted gross margin rate as discussed above.
For the quarter, free cash flow was $18.1 million, as compared to $21.7 million in fiscal 2012. The decrease was due mainly to the lower adjusted operating results and higher investment in capital expenditures, somewhat offset by the payment of $2.7 million in deferred financing charges on the issue of a new convertible debenture in the comparable quarter of fiscal 2012.
Industrial volume will be higher in fiscal 2013 as additional volume has been contracted with new and existing accounts. In addition the Company was able to contract additional liquid sugar volume with one large bottler in western Canada. Shipments against this new contract are forecast to start in the spring of 2013. Export volume is forecast to be lower this fiscal year as no special U.S. quotas are expected during the year as a result of large crops in the U.S. and Mexico. Overall volume for fiscal 2013 is expected to be higher than fiscal 2012.
The Taber beet sugar slicing campaign is estimated to be completed by mid-February. We are now estimating total sugar beet production at approximately 118,000 metric tonnes, when the thick juice campaign will be completed in the spring of 2013. This total production volume is larger than our current sales estimate for Taber, including the additional liquid sales starting in the spring of 2013. The additional beet refined sugar inventory will be warehoused or sold against additional opportunities that may arise over the balance of the fiscal year.
FOR THE BOARD OF DIRECTORS Signed Stuart Belkin, Chairman Vancouver, British Columbia - January 30, 2013
MANAGEMENTS' DISCUSSION AND ANALYSIS
This Management's Discussion and Analysis ("MD&A") dated January 30, 2013 of Rogers Sugar Inc. ("Rogers") should be read in conjunction with the unaudited condensed consolidated interim financial statements and notes thereto for the period ended December 29, 2012, as well as the audited consolidated financial statements and MD&A for the year ended September 29, 2012. The quarterly condensed consolidated financial statements and any amounts shown in this MD&A were not reviewed nor audited by our external auditors.
Management is responsible for preparing the MD&A. This MD&A has been reviewed and approved by the Audit Committee of Rogers and its Board of Directors.
In analyzing our results, we supplement our use of financial measures that are calculated and presented in accordance with GAAP, with a number of non-GAAP financial measures. A non-GAAP financial measure is a numerical measure of a company's historical performance, financial position or cash flow that excludes (includes) amounts, or is subject to adjustments that have the effect of excluding (including) amounts, that are included (excluded) in most directly comparable measures calculated and presented in accordance with GAAP. Non-GAAP financial measures are not standardized; therefore, it may not be possible to compare these financial measures with other companies' non-GAAP financial measures having the same or similar businesses. We strongly encourage investors to review our consolidated financial statements and publicly filed reports in their entirety and not to rely on any single financial measure.