During the fiscal year, we reduced our lost-workday injury rate by 26 percent and our total recordable injury rate by 9 percent compared with the prior year.
Net earnings reached $1.9 billion, or $3.00 per share—a 15 percent gain over our totals for 2009—while year-over-year segment operating profit increased nearly a third, to $3.2 billion from $2.5 billion. And, we extended our uninterrupted string of quarterly dividend payments to 79 years.
Our performance was highlighted by record Oilseeds Processing profit of $1.4 billion. Strong crushing margins were supported by record demand for North American protein exports. We gained additional profit from the increased Brazilian biodiesel capacity we brought online to meet growth in South American demand. We also capitalized on opportunities to profitably increase our regional grain-origination business as Brazil and Paraguay harvested record soybean crops.
Corn Processing results rebounded from a tough 2009. Our decision to increase ethanol merchandising, together with additional production from our new facilities, helped us achieve double-digit growth in ethanol sales volumes in an improved margin environment. Amid lower sweetener demand in the United States, we capitalized on new opportunities in the Mexico market, achieving a significant increase in sweetener sales in the country.
Our Agricultural Services team executed strongly throughout the year. In the U.S., we handled a large and logistically challenging crop. Growing world demand for grain also created opportunities, which we captured by acquiring oceangoing vessels and upgrading our barge fleet.