HOUSTON, Sept. 30 Omega Protein Corporation(NYSE: OME), the nation's leading producer of Omega-3 fish oil and specialtyfish meal products, today announced an update on the impact of hurricanes inthe third quarter 2008. As previously reported, the Company's Cameron,Louisiana and Abbeville, Louisiana fish processing facilities were bothdamaged by Hurricane Ike.
The Company's Abbeville facility was restored to full capacity onSeptember 22, 2008. Some additional repair work will need to be done in theupcoming 2008 off-season but the facility is now available for processing.
The Company's Cameron facility is continuing its repair schedule and isexpected to be fully functional prior to the beginning of the 2009 fishingseason. For the remainder of the 2008 fishing season, the Company hasredeployed all of its ten Cameron vessels to its Abbeville and Moss Point,Mississippi facilities.
The Company anticipates significantly higher per unit production costs forits 2008 total production due to lost fishing days caused by Hurricanes Gustavand Ike and due to additional operating costs. In addition, the lost fishingdays will result in lower 2008 product volumes available for sale.
Separately, the Company announced receipt of a $1.2 million grant, net offees and expenses, from the Louisiana Department of Wildlife and Fisheries.The grant provides assistance for commercial fishing owners impacted byHurricanes Katrina and Rita in 2005. Additional grants for 2005 hurricaneassistance may also be available from the state of Mississippi, but theCompany is unable to predict when such aid may be available or in whatamounts.
About Omega Protein
Omega Protein Corporation is the nation's largest manufacturer ofheart-healthy fish oils containing Omega-3 fatty acids for human consumption,as well as specialty fish meals and fish oil used as value-added ingredientsin aquaculture, swine and other livestock feeds. Omega Protein makes itsproducts from menhaden, an Omega-3 rich fish that is not utilized as seafood,but which is abundantly available along the U.S. Gulf of Mexico and AtlanticCoasts.
SPECIAL NOTE REGARDING FORWARD-LOOKING STATEMENTS: The statementscontained in this press release that are not historical facts areforward-looking statements that involve a number of risks and uncertainties.The actual results of future events described in any of these forward-lookingstatements could differ materially from those stated in the forward-lookingstatements. Important factors that could cause actual results to bematerially different from those forward-looking statements include, amongothers: (1) the Company's estimates of damages or repair times beingincorrect; (2) the Company's estimates of production costs and product volumesbeing incorrect; (3) the Company's assessment of the availability of anyadditional hurricane grants; (4) the Company's ability to meet its rawmaterial requirements through its annual menhaden harvest, which is subject tofluctuations due to natural conditions over which the Company has no controlsuch as varying fish population, fish oil yields, adverse weather conditionsand disease; (5) the impact of worldwide supply and demand relationships onprices for the Company's products; (6) Omega Protein's expectations regardingdemand for OmegaPure(R) being incorrect; and (7) fluctuations in the Company'squarterly operating results due to the seasonality of the Company's businessand its deferral of inventory sales based on worldwide prices for competingproducts. These and other factors are described in further detail in Omega'sfilings with the Securities and Exchange Commission, including its reports onForm 10-K, Form10-Q and Form 8-K. The Company also posts its latestinternally generated price list for various products on its Company website,http://www.omegaproteininc.com. Pricing and product availability informationdisclosed in the price list are subject to change or discontinuance withoutprior notice, and the Company undertakes no obligation to update suchinformation.
SOURCE Omega Protein Corporation