Nestle, the world's largest food maker, published its half-year figures this week, numbers that are often a barometer for the rest of the sector. The company's results were robust although it did issue some caution over rising commodity costs. just-food reported from Moscow about the Russian grain crisis and the impact it could have on food makers. Meanwhile, Sara Lee chief Brenda Barnes stepped down due to illness and we analysed what the future holds for the US food group.

Comment: Nestle pulls no punches on emerging markets
Nestle used its first-half results announcement to come out fighting on a key issue for investors - its presence in emerging markets.

On the money: Nestle makes price hike hint as commodities bite
Nestle CFO Jim Singh hinted that the world's largest food maker could seek to increase prices later this year to deal with pressure on commodity costs.

Analysis: Russian grain crisis to inflate prices
Russian prime minister Vladimir Putin has imposed a temporary ban on exports of grain from the country following the worst drought and fires in a century. As one of the world's largest grain producers, the move has heavily impacted wheat prices - but will the impact on prices be over the medium term?

On the money: Tyson plays down concerns over wheat prices
US meat giant Tyson Foods has played down the potential impact of the Russian grain crisis on its bottom line.

In the spotlight – Sara Lee
There has been much speculation in recent weeks about the future US food group Sara Lee. Plans to sell its North American bread business have been rumoured, a move some believe would herald a break-up of the business. This week, chairman and CEO Brenda Barnes stepped down after illness and the company issued its annual results, as well as an outlook for the first quarter of its next fiscal year that disappointed some analysts.

FRANCE: Dairy processors, farmers to meet next week on price 
French dairy groups have agreed to hold fresh talks with farmers on milk prices next week in an effort to avoid a repeat of the disruption in supplies to processing plants seen last year. 

Talking shop: Shareholder strife at Russian retailer Lenta 
Russian grocery retailer Lenta, long a rumoured takeover target of Wal-Mart, is enjoying growing sales in Russia's emerging retail market but, as Petah Marian reports, in-fighting among shareholders could derail the business. 

DENMARK: Unilever to buy ice-cream maker Diplom-Is 
Unilever is to acquire Danish ice-cream business Diplom-Is from Norwegian dairy group Tine. 

UK: Northern Foods sells Dalepak Frozen Foods
UK food maker Northern Foods has reached an agreement to sell Dalepak Frozen foods to the Irish Food Processors Group.

 

FRANCE: Hero Group to sell French fruit-dessert business Swiss food manufacturer Hero Group has announced it will sell its French fruit-dessert business to Charles Faraud.