Editor's choice: the highlights on just-food last week

By Dean Best | 18 June 2012

Tesco and Sainsbury's reported first-quarter trading updates this week and both UK retailers faced questions over their prospects for the rest of the year. US meat giant Smithfield Foods also faced analysts after it posted its full-year results, with CEO Larry Pope arguing Wall Street does not value the company highly enough. Elsewhere, Arla announced a tie-up in China, PepsiCo made Mexico the first market for its global dips venture and UK firm Premier Foods plc offloaded another of its businesses. Click on the headlines for more.

Comment: Tesco needs time - will it get it?
Looking at Tesco's first-quarter sales figures, it seems trading remains tough for the UK's largest retailer. However, Tesco has only just started introducing the changes it hopes will revitalise its domestic business. That said, competition remains fierce and the fall in Tesco's share price suggest investors are less than confident about the prospects of a recovery in the short term.

CHINA: Arla deepens links with dairy giant Mengniu
Arla Foods has strengthened its ties with Chinese dairy group Mengniu in a bid to boost its sales in the country.

UK: Findus silent on Triton "takeover bid"
Troubled UK frozen seafood firm Findus Group has remained silent over reports it has received a takeover bid from private-equity firm Triton Partners.

On the money: "Wall Street doesn't appreciate us" - Smithfield CEO Pope
Smithfield Foods CEO Larry Pope has insisted the group is under-valued after shares in the meat firm fell more than 7% after fourth-quarter results that failed to meet analyst expectations.

On the money: King upbeat as Sainsbury's misses City forecasts
Sainsbury's chief executive Justin King today (13 June) stood by the UK retailer's recent performance after the company missed City forecasts on its first-quarter sales.

Focus: Disney sets precedent on children's ads
Disney has unveiled upgraded commitments around marketing healthier food to children including most notably nutritional criteria for food advertising on its TV channels. Other media companies are now under pressure to follow suit, Ben Cooper writes, while there is also growing support for broadcasting networks to join the food industry's self-regulatory initiative.

UK: Premier sells vinegar, sour pickles unit to Mizkan
Premier Foods plc has sold its vinegar and sour pickles business, including the Sarson's and Haywards brands, to Japanese food group Mizkan.

FRANCE: Strike at Nestle pizza plant enters third week
A strike at Nestle's pizza plant in Caudry, northern France, over wage demands, has entered its third week.

MEXICO: PepsiCo, Strauss start Obela dips launch in Mexico
PepsiCo and Israeli food maker Strauss Group are to launch a range of dips and spreads for the Mexican market.

Sectors: Chilled foods, Condiments, dressings & sauces, Dairy, Emerging markets, Financials, Frozen, Mergers & acquisitions, Retail

Companies: Tesco, Sainsbury’s, Smithfield Foods, Premier Foods plc, PepsiCo, Arla Foods, Findus Group, Mizkan, Nestle, Strauss Group

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Editor's choice: the highlights on just-food last week

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