Leche Pascual is bullish on China’s promising yoghurts market and it is looking for partners – including large peer Mengniu Dairy – that can help it grow in the country, a company spokesman told just-food.

“The pasteurised yoghurt market is booming and Mengniu is an important dairy producer with which we are having fluid conversations about a strategic alliance,” the spokesman noted.

Pascual already markets its Pascual pasteurised yoghurts in China, particularly in Shanghai and Beijing, through an unnamed distributor, he said, adding that Pascual hopes to have a bigger presence in China in the long term.

It is too early to say whether the Mengniu deal, if consummated, will be a joint venture, distribution accord or if Pascual will agree to sell Mengniu its yoghurt know-how and co-market one of its brands.

The spokesman denied reports that said Mengniu is on the brink of making a takeover bid for Pascual.

“Leche Pascual is not for sale and Mengniu is not interested in buying us,” he reiterated.

He could not confirm reports that said Dutch peer Campina has made a bid for family-owned Pascual.