Hain sees potential for Tilda in the US - and believes brand could help boost presence of existing products elsewhere

Hain sees potential for Tilda in the US - and believes brand could help boost presence of existing products elsewhere

US group Hain Celestial swooped again in the UK last week, snapping up UK rice business Tilda. Meanwhile, obesity grabbed UK headlines with warnings forecasts for the condition could have under-estimated the problem. Fonterra issued another product recall, Saputo received a boost in its bid to buy Warrnambool Cheese and Butter Factory, while our first just-food interview of 2014 saw us meet Quorn Foods CEO Kevin Brennan.

In the spotlight: Hain Celestial eyes US, global growth with Tilda acquisition
Hain Celestial believes its acquisition of UK-based Basmati rice firm Tilda will work to the benefit of both businesses. The US group has identified a number of areas where it intends to drive Tilda's growth. Hain also intends to capitalise on Tilda's international presence by feeding its existing product portfolio into markets such as India and the Middle East. Katy Askew reports.

The just-food interview - Quorn Foods CEO Kevin Brennan
Dean Best met Quorn Foods CEO Kevin Brennan to hear how the UK-based meat-free manufacturer believes the horsemeat saga has changed consumer confidence and its plans for the UK and overseas.

Consuming issues: Battle lines drawn over added sugar
The leading health experts behind the Action on Sugar campaign, launched last week, believe the success in driving down salt intake in the UK following the launch of the Consensus Action on Salt and Health campaign can be replicated with sugar. Ben Cooper has his doubts.

Interview: Efforts on obesity "not enough" to avert crisis - National Obesity Forum chair Prof. David Haslam
The UK government and food industry are making a concerted effort to tackle the mounting obesity crisis - but Professor David Haslam of the National Obesity Forum tells just-food more must be done by all stakeholders to reverse the tide of rising obesity levels.

Comment: E.Coli recall could sour Fonterra's reputation further
Food recalls are part of the industry in which we operate. Even companies with best-in-class safety and quality standards can, from time to time, be forced to recall product. However, when New Zealand dairy giant Fonterra issued an E.Coli recall earlier this week, echoes of last year's botulism scare jumped to mind. With this fresh recall coming hot on the heels of such as massive blow, Katy Askew suggests Fonterra could find its reputation tarnished further still.

AUS: Bega Cheese to sell WCB stake to Saputo
Saputo's bid to buy Warrnambool Cheese and Butter Factory was given a boost today (16 January) after Bega Cheese decided to sell its stake in the Australian firm to the Canadian dairy giant.

UK: United Biscuits sale not on cards - sources
The private-equity owners of United Biscuits are not preparing for an imminent sale of the UK biscuit group, industry sources have indicated.

On the money: Questions surround Carrefour's hypermarket strategy
That Carrefour made further progress on its turnaround plan during 2013 was left in no doubt when the company revealed improving underlying sales trends. However, fourth-quarter revenues in France missed consensus expectations and the retailer still has a number of domestic questions to answer - particularly around its hypermarket strategy. Katy Askew reports.

NETHERLANDS: US hits Ahold sales, shares fall
A fall in fourth-quarter sales in the US hit shares in Giant Food and Stop & Shop owner Ahold in early trade today (16 January).

Talking shop: Aldi will face pressure from UK Big Four in 2014
Reporting a whopping 31% increase in its Christmas sales and the busiest ever festive period since opening in the UK, Aldi was no stranger to celebration last week. But, according to industry watchers, Aldi's larger competitors are unlikely to stand by and watch the discount giant steal yet more of their trade in 2014.