CAGE conference was among the weeks event highlights

CAGE conference was among the week's event highlights

just-food brought you exclusive updates from some of the power players in our industry as the likes of Nestle, Danone and Kerry Foods set out their investment case at the Consumer Analyst Group of Europe conference in London this week. In other news, Sainsbury's booked its first like-for-like sales drop in nine years, General Mills continued to face pressure in the US and we spoke to FrieslandCampina CFO Kees Gielen. Here are the highlights from the past week.

UK: Sainsbury's posts Q4 LFL sales drop
Sainsbury's booked its first drop in like-for-like sales in nine years this morning (18 March), when the UK retailer revealed fourth-quarter comparable revenues fell 3.8%.

UK/NETHERLANDS: Unilever issues GBP250m "green bond"
Unilever revealed plans to issue the "first ever green sustainability bond" in the sterling market yesterday (19 March).

US: General Mills confirms Q3 underlying profit fall
General Mills today (19 March) confirmed a fall in underlying profits in its third quarter, with the Yoplait yoghurt and Old El Paso meal kits maker pointing to pressure on sales in the US.

CAGE: Danone leveraging breadth of offering in US yoghurt
Danone believes it is well positioned in the competitive US yoghurt sector because it is the "only" company capable of meeting its customers' needs across Greek and traditional products, co-chief operating officer Emmanuel Faber argued.

The just-food interview: FrieslandCampina profitability ahead of schedule
FrieslandCampina had something of a challenging year in 2013. During the period, the group's European business proved a sticking point as a goodwill adjustment associated with economic turbulence in the region hit the bottom line. However, strip out one-time charges and CFO Kees Gielen insists the firm is on the right track. speaking to Hannah Abdulla in part-two of the just-food interview, Gielen highlighted the underlying strength of the business.

UK: Morrisons employee arrested over "payroll data theft"
A Morrisons employee has been arrested for allegedly stealing payroll data that then appeared in the public domain, the UK grocer has confirmed.

Interview: Guylian eyes growth after flat 2013
Sales at upmarket chocolate maker Guylian were flat in 2013, with the Belgian group enjoying growth in the US and Europe but reporting a mixed performance in Asia. The company, part of South Korean conglomerate Lotte Corp., expects a challenging 2014 but is embarking on an NPD push to drive growth. Dean Best talks to export director Steven Candries.

CAGE: Kerry eyes consumer foods growth through snacking
Kerry Group CEO Stan McCarthy has indicated the Ireland-based food maker believes increasing demand for snacking presents an opportunity to grow the company's consumer foods business.

CAGE: Glanbia eyes "global" performance nutrition brands
Glanbia wants to build "global" performance nutrition brands, the Ireland-based food group's managing director Siobhán Talbot has said.

CAGE 2014: Kraft upbeat amid "unprecedented" change
Kraft Foods Group has expressed optimism it can prosper despite what its CFO Teri List-Stoll called the "unprecedented" change affecting the US grocery sector.