Ruddick Corporation has reported continuing weak business conditions at its industrial sewing thread subsidiary American & Efird (A&E). A&E's sales of $70.7 million in the 2002 fiscal second quarter were down 18 per cent from the $86.2 million for the same quarter last year. In the first six months of fiscal 2002 sales fell 20.1 per cent to $136.4 million.