Quote, unquote: just-food's week in words

By Michelle Russell | 2 July 2012

Among the key quotes this week, Nestle reflected on the confirmation of child labour in its cocoa supply chain after the findings of a report it commissioned were published. Elsewhere, Hershey outlined its hopes for international expansion, General Mills explained why it is reorganising its business after a year of falling profits and Greencore underlined why the potential it sees in the US after another acquisition.

"The use of child labour in our cocoa supply chain goes against everything we stand for. As the FLA report makes clear, no company sourcing cocoa from Côte d'Ivoire can guarantee that it doesn't happen, but what we can say is that tackling child labour is a top priority for our company" - José Lopez, Nestle executive vice president for operations, reacts to the publication of an investigation into the company's cocoa supply.

"The global confectionery market remains fragmented, it is the least consolidated of any category around the globe. There is room for us to capture growth organically or via M&A. What makes these geographies attractive are the estimated growth rates. Double digits in Brazil, Latin America and in India and China 9%" - Hershey president and CEO John Bilbrey outlines where the US confectioner could look to buy companies.

"It will generate savings we will invest back in our businesses and enable us to deliver a balance plan for growth across our global platforms" - General Mills' chairman and CEO Ken Powell explains why the company is reorganising its business worldwide.

"It is a massive opportunity. We think that is a great opportunity to expand and it is something that we excel at in the UK" - Greencore CFO Alan Williams believes the US market can offer the potential for growth for the Irish chilled food group.

"Quality will out at the end of the day and even in difficult times people want to eat quality food. Whilst we have seen a reduction in expenditure outside of the home, when they are eating at home people may spend more money there and treat themselves" - Cranswick CEO Adam Couch outlines the opportunity for the UK meat firm in a downturn.

"We're fortunate we're in a good business, there's no question about that, but we're also being proactive to make sure we give consumers reason to continue to buy our products" - McCormick chairman, president and CEO Alan Wilson after the US spice company saw profits from its consumer business recover in the last three months.

"Morrisons will not sell any fewer baked beans because its finance director is going. However, his departure is an unwelcome loss and distraction for the board" - Shore Capital analysts Clive Black and Darren Shirley on the decision of Morrisons CFO Richard Pennycook to leave the UK retailer.

"Canned foods are perceived negatively [by this age group]," says Faulkner. "We need to remove that barrier" - John Faulkner, Campbell's director of brand communications, explains why the soup manufacturer sells products in pouches.

"I think the idea of software on-premise - having your own servers where you have to manage and maintain it - is going the way of the dodo bird" - Roman Bukary, GM of manufacturing, wholesale and distribution at NetSuite, believes more food manufacturers will look for ERP software systems on the cloud.

"Nigeria is in the World Bank's top third of countries in terms of investment policy including investor protections, has liberal exchange controls, allows foreigners ability to own 100% of a local company and also a favourable tax regime" - Ian Luyt, of strategic advisors NOViROST, explains why the African country could be attractive for potential investors.

Sectors: Advertising & labelling, Baby food, Bakery, Canned food, Cereal, Chilled foods, Commodities & ingredients, Condiments, dressings & sauces, Confectionery, Dairy, Dried foods, Emerging markets, Financials, Food safety, Fresh produce, Frozen, Health & wellness, Ice cream, Meat & poultry, Mergers & acquisitions, Natural & organic, NPD & innovation, Private label, Retail, Seafood, Snacks, Sustainability & the environment, World foods

Companies: Nestle, Hershey, Greencore, General Mills, Cranswick, Morrisons

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