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

By Dean Best | 11 February 2013

UK minister Heath said government could only reassure consumers after beef tests

UK minister Heath said government could only reassure consumers after beef tests

Few stories in recent months have caused as much comment as the horse meat scandal, which last week deepened with the news Findus lasagne sold in the UK contained the ingredient. Elsewhere, Dairy Crest said potential takeover targets wanted too much money, Nestle found another country looking at the implications of its Pfizer infant formula acquisition and Kraft Foods Group went to court over the Cracker Barrel trademark.

"We are confident that we have fully resolved this supply chain issue" - Findus UK after admitting its frozen lasagne contained up to 60% horse meat.

"The FSA is now requiring a more robust response from the food industry in order to demonstrate that the food it sells and serves is what it says it is on the label" - in the wake of the Findus contamination, Catherine Brown, chair of the UK's Food Standards Agency, outlines its demands for the country's food sector to urgently test their meat products.

"The most important thing we can do is to carry out the testing. The FSA has asked every retailer and processor to check every beef product they have to make sure it is what it says it is. If that it is the case, we will be able to give that reassurance. Until then, frankly, we can't" - UK food minister David Heath tells the BBC only after the results of tests demanded by the FSA can the Government reassure consumers of the composition of beef products.

"We're keeping our money in our pocket" - a Dairy Crest spokesperson says the UK group's takeover targets had placed too high a price on their businesses - and the company is now focusing on improving its balance sheet.

"During [this] time Nestle will license out the existing Pfizer products for sale under different brand names to an independent licensee. After the 20-year period, Nestle may re-introduce the Pfizer brands with their original branding into the market" - South Africa's Competition Commission puts forward a plan to protect competition in the country's infant formula market after Nestle's acquisition of Pfizer's global infant nutrition business.

"The cereal category in the UK continues to be competitive but we saw improvement. Recent innovations are all off to a good start and we are optimisitic as we start 2013" - Kellogg president and CEO John Bryant reflects on the US group's performance - and its prospects - in the UK cereal market.

"[The] defendants' actions threaten to destroy the substantial goodwill that Kraft has created in its Cracker Barrel trademark, and to create significant confusion and cannot be permitted" - Kraft Foods Group launches legal action against US restaurant chain Cracker Barrel's plans to sell branded products in US retail stores.

"We will consolidate our position in Spain and broaden the range of processed cheese products that we offer our customers" - Nicolas Barral, general manager of Group Bel's Spanish business, explains why the French firm has moved to buy Spanish brand Tranchettes.

"These decisions were carefully considered and made with the ultimate goal of serving our customers, growing our business and creating shareholder value" - a spokesperson for Delhaize Group's US business outlines why the Belgian retailer is to cut 500 jobs from its chains across the Atlantic.

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Sectors: Baby food, Cereal, Dairy, Food safety, Frozen, Meat & poultry, Mergers & acquisitions, Natural & organic, Retail, Snacks

Companies: Findus, Nestle, Pfizer, Dairy Crest, Kraft Foods Group, Kellogg, Bel, Delhaize Group

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