Future is sweet: Callebauts Steinemann "positive" about Cadbury sale

Future is sweet: Callebaut's Steinemann "positive" about Cadbury sale

It was a week when food industry execs took turns to explain their 2009 results to analysts and press. Hershey defended its strategy, Unilever acknowledged its challenges in Europe and Kellogg insisted its marketing was paying off - even as volumes fell. The UK saw the dawn of a code to oversee relations between retailers and suppliers - and the latter took the chance to hit out at their customers. And Kraft Foods boss Irene Rosenfeld revealed what it was really like when she met Peter Mandelson.

"I would liken it to a root canal" - Kraft Foods chairman and CEO Irene Rosenfeld tells Cadbury employees how she felt meeting UK Business Secretary Peter Mandelson.

"This week should have been marked by a sea change in grocery supply chain relationships with our farmer and grower members. Instead, in the past ten days, I have heard how suppliers to major retailers have faced some of the most unreasonable demands for retrospective payments and changes to trading terms that we've ever seen" - Peter Kendall, president of the UK's National Farmers' Union, hit out retailer "bully-boy tactics" in the week a code of practice to govern relations went live.

"It's still a fragmented global category with opportunities out there to expand" - Hershey CEO Dave West surveys the confectionery sector worldwide - where the US chocolate maker lags behind its bigger rivals.

"If a global company wants to talk to chocolate people, they like to talk to people on a level playing field" - Juergen Steinemann, head of chocolate maker Barry Callebaut, sees the positives from consolidation in the sector.

"We still have a long way to go. We still have much to do in Western Europe ... but there is a growing sense of confidence in the team and belief that we can win" - Unilever boss Paul Polman remains upbeat about the company's toughest region.

"We are looking to help grow a safe, secure and sustainable milk supply in China in order to meet this demand and expand our customer base" - Fonterra China MD Philip Turner explains the dairy giant's fresh investment in China.

"We achieved what we wanted to achieve. We did stop the erosion on our branded products. That was our number one objective" - Flowers Foods chairman and CEO George Deese takes the positives from another testing quarter in US bakery.

"Our belief in advertising is that we have to invest in our brand to keep the brand equity strong, continue to reinforce the value, the quality of the products we sell - particularly in an environment where consumers need to be reminded of these things on an ongoing basis" - Kellogg boss David Mackay says the cereal group's marketing is paying off.

"Our inspectors and scientists lack sufficient resources. Our goal is to overhaul the system so that we can get better at both stopping food safety problems before they happen and almost equally as important moving quickly – much more quickly – to deal with them when they do" - US Vice President Joe Biden outlines why the Obama administration has prioritised food safety.

"It’s daft to allow extra junk food marketing to our children and yet expect them to adopt a healthier diet than they already do" - Christine Haigh of UK pressure the Children's Food Campaign urges the Government to reverse plans for product placement.