Swiss food producer Nestlé is reported to have offered US$11.5bn to acquire US counterpart Hershey Foods.

According to a report in USA Today, Nestlé presented a preliminary bid of US$82 to US$85 per share after senior executives toured Hershey facilities twice last week and analysed the confectioner's financial records.

Cadbury and Kraft are widely tipped to be preparing their own bids to acquire the US confectionery group.