The price of eggs rose almost 60% in the US. We explain why 2:38
New York (CNN) --
New York (CNN) --
A rise in the price of eggs has hit consumers' wallets.
But even with its own costs rising, America's top supplier of eggs has found it can make even more money on each egg.
The egg shortage led to record quarterly profits and sales at Cal-Maine Foods (CALM), the largest producer and distributor of eggs in the United States.
The company produces eggs for the Farmhouse Eggs, Sunups, Sunny Meadow, Egg-Land's Best and Land O' Lakes brands.
Cal-Maine's profit increased 65% to $198 million for the three months ended Nov. 26 from a year earlier.
Why have eggs gone up so much in price this year?
A supply shock, triggered by the deadliest outbreak of highly pathogenic avian influenza in US history, has pushed prices up.
Bird flu has killed more than 50 million birds in the United States since the beginning of 2022, according to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).
There have been no positive tests for avian flu at any Cal-Maine Foods facility.
As a result, retail prices for eggs have risen more than any other item in the supermarket in recent months, rising 11.1% from November to December and 59.9% annually, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics.
And with supplies remaining tight and profits rising, Cal-Maine said it expects the outbreak to continue to affect overall egg supplies this year.
On December 28, Cal-Maine reported record quarterly sales of $801.7 million, an increase of 110% compared to the same quarter last year.
The company said it was "buoyed by the record average selling price of conventional eggs" to its retail customers.
(Walmart is its biggest customer.)
Cal-Maine's average net selling price of conventional eggs for the quarter was $2.88 per dozen, more than double that of a year earlier, the company said.
Sales prices for the company's specialty eggs, which include improved, cage-free, organic, free-range, pasture-raised and brown eggs, increased 24.9% during the quarter to $2.37 per dozen.
“Significantly higher sales prices, our enduring focus on cost control and our ability to adapt to inflationary market pressures led to better overall profitability,” Max Bowman, Cal-Maine's chief financial officer, said in a statement.
Cal-Maine shares rose 47% last year, reaching all-time highs.
So far this year, the company's shares are flat.