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It's been on a roll this year -- after starting the year stuck at a two-star rank, enough top-performing CAPS members have come to the bullish side of Smart Balance (NASDAQ:SMBL) recently to upgrade it to a more formidable four stars. A total of 210 members have given their opinion on the food-products marketer, with many of them offering analysis and commentary explaining the recent optimism.

Smart Balance makes increasingly popular buttery spreads and other "heart healthy" food products found in Wal-Mart Stores (NYSE:WMT) and various grocery chains. Companies like Whole Foods Market (NASDAQ:WFMI), which also distributes Smart Balance products, have built a reputation on higher-quality foods, and food manufacturers have joined the health-conscious bandwagon in recent years, too, giving many investors confidence in the strong potential of Smart Balance's brand. The company saw strong sales volume and increasing earnings in its most recent quarter and recently laid out a strategy targeted toward continuing that momentum.

Smart Balance plans to continue to build market share in its core spreads category while also expanding its offering of dairy and other products, including its new, recently licensed Bestlife brand. And with its low capital expenditures helping to consistently generate free cash flow, it expects to maintain the financial flexibility to help build its segments. While companies like General Mills (NYSE:GIS), Kraft Foods (NYSE:KFT), and ConAgra (NYSE:CAG) are already multibillion dollar companies, CAPS members see a lot of room for growth with Smart Balance. The small-cap has set large sales growth goals, but many investors are optimistic that it can achieve them.

Do you think Smart Balance deserves its raised status? Add your thoughts in the comments box below on this page, or head over to CAPS to rate the company and check out all the information and opinions the community offers, absolutely free.

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Fool contributor Dave Mock owns no shares of companies mentioned here. Wal-Mart is an Inside Value selection. Smart Balance is a Rule Breakers pick. Whole Foods is a Stock Advisor recommendation. The Fool's disclosure policywent puddle-hopping yesterday.