Beyond Meat “Beyond Burger” patties made from plant-based meat substitutes will go on sale on a shelf in New York City on November 15, 2019.

Angela Weiss | AFP | Getty Images

Beyond Meat reported a higher than expected first quarter loss on Thursday as restaurant customers take longer to return and grocery shoppers no longer stock their meat substitutes.

However, CEO Ethan Brown said the company was “slowly thawing” its food service segment in the US and some international markets, prompting the company to issue a revenue forecast for the next quarter.

The company’s shares fell 6% in expanded trading.

The company reported, relative to Wall Street expectations based on an analyst survey by Refinitiv:

  • Loss per share: 42 cents adjusted compared to 19 cents expected
  • Revenue: $ 108.2 million versus $ 113.7 million expected

Additionally, the company posted a net loss of $ 27.3 million, or 43 cents per share, for the first quarter compared to net income of $ 1.8 million, or 3 cents per share, a year earlier.

Excluding the cost of early debt repayment, the company lost 42 cents per share, more than the 19 cents per share that Refinitiv surveyed analysts had expected.

This is the third quarter in a row that Beyond has reported a higher than expected loss. The company has reinvested in its business to position itself as a global player. The company also has production facilities in China and the Netherlands, for example.

Net sales rose 11.4% to $ 108.2 million, falling short of expectations of $ 113.7 million.

US retail sales rose 27.8% for the quarter. Grocery and convenience store sales accounted for more than three-quarters of the company’s total US sales. Before the pandemic, retail sales were only about half of Beyond’s sales.

Food service sales in the United States fell 26% as improved menus and reduced customer traffic in restaurants weighed on demand.

Outside of Beyond’s home market, sales rose 12.5%, driven by soaring retail demand. International grocery sales nearly tripled in the quarter. Overall, international sales account for a quarter of the company’s sales.

For the second quarter, the company forecasts revenue of between $ 135 million and $ 150 million, an increase of 19 to 32 percent over the same period last year. Wall Street analysts expect net sales of 142.8 million US dollars for the next quarter.

Beyond did not provide an outlook for the full year, citing the uncertainty caused by the pandemic.