Food industry quotes of the week - Arla, Premier, Thorntons
Arla Middle East and Africa boss Rasmus Malmbak Kjeldsen
This week, Arla Foods struck a notable deal in Egypt, with plans for a local venture with Juhayna Food Industries. Elsewhere, Unilever announced CFO Jean-Marc Huet would step down from his post and Thorntons said CEO Jonathan Hart had decided to leave the business. Premier Foods announced its annual results and CEO GavinDarby said the UK group would continue to focus on revamping its range. Here is the week in quotes.
T oday our business is merely scraping the surface, but now we will be able to drastically expand our distribution to reach millions of new consumers RasmusMalmbak Kjeldsen, senior director of Arla Foods' operations in the Middle East and Africa said the dairy giant's new venture with Egypt's Juhayna Food Industries will see the co-op's products reach "all corners" of the country.
"We are happy to add through innovation and NPD but it has to be a net number. We will continue to house-keep out other SKUs so we can stay roughly in the position we are in. I see de-complexity or simplicity in retailers as a significant opportunity. We embarked on that journey 18 months before our customers did. We feel in very good shape" - Premier Foods CEO Gavin Darby says the company will continue to manage its portfolio in a bid to stay relevant.
"It is not fit for purpose in its current form, but there is still a chance for redemption" - Katharine Jenner, campaign director for Action on Sugar, is critical of the UK's Responsibility Deal but says there is hope for the voluntary programme.
These aren’t just jobs for today – these are jobs that should be lasting into the future. This factory has been here for over 90 years. Some of the people at Cadbury – their parents and their grandparents worked here. But where are their kids going to work?" - The Australian Manufacturing Workers' Union Tasmanian secretary John Short comments on Mondelez' decision to cut 80 manufacturing jobs at a Cadbury plant in Australia.
"As a cooperative, we have a responsibility to be economically successful in order to provide long-term job security for the employees and to be able to pay a competitive milk price..." - DMK CEO Dr Josef Schwaiger announces that the company plans to close two "outdated" plants Nuremberg and Recke.
"We're on track. It's been referred back to the UK from Europe, and we expect to hear in the next few weeks the result of phase one [of the investigation]. It may go to phase two. If it does, I don't think that changes our opinion. We're absolutely committed and convinced that this deal will go through"- Mark Allen, CEO of Dairy Crest, is upbeat on the likelihood of the sale of the dairies unit to Muller Wiseman Dairies for GBP80m.
"Thorntons requires a different set of capabilities - most likely garnered from the FMCG industry - to deliver the necessary execution and focus to establish a fundamentally different competitive position and a lasting step-change in Thorntons' operational and financial performance" - Charles Stanley analyst Peter Smedley on what the UK chocolate maker should be looking for in its next CEO.
"We have significant headroom to increase speciality cheese consumption and maximise the impact of our portfolio, and our strategy is focused on unlocking this opportunity" - Lion CEO Stuart Irvine said speciality cheese will be a "key value driver" for Lion as the company expands its speciality cheese capabilities and upgrades a site in Tasmania.
"The declining demand and overall operating cost structure for the facility no longer allow us to meet the needs of the business. Some products will be discontinued and some of the cookies will be made in a different ConAgra Foods plant" - A spokesperson for ConAgra Foods says the company is to shut a biscuit factory in the US state of Wisconsin amid falling demand.
"We are a bit surprised about this decision but do not read anything negative into this change, as Jean-Marc improved Unilever’s communication materially over the years" - MainFirst analyst Alain-Sebastian Oberhuber comments on the "somewhat surprising" decision from Unilever CFO Jean-Marc Huet to step down.
- Danone's Q1: four things to learn
- Who will buy Danone's Stonyfield business?
- Column: Why snacking is the new meal
- Nestle Q1 update: four things to learn
- Interview: Sir Kensington's on sale to Unilever
- Tyson shops Sara Lee bakery, Kettle and Van's
- Nestle to cut UK confectionery jobs
- Tyson to buy burger-to-entree firm AdvancePierre
- PepsiCo affirms full-year target as Q1 hits mark
- Icelandic to sell Saucy Fish Co. owner Seachill