Once again, the dairy and infant formula sectors in Asia-Pacific grabbed the headlines last week. Danone was at the centre of yet more bribery allegations in China. Fonterra – which has had its own scandals this year – published its annual results and said it planned to up its focus on nutrition and on emerging markets. And Australian dairy processor Warrnambool Cheese and Butter Factory turned down a takeover bid fro local peer – and investor – Bega Cheese.
CHINA: Danone medical nutrition arm Nutricia probes bribery claims
A second Danone division is the subject of bribery allegations in China.
On the money: Fonterra ups focus on nutrition, emerging markets
Fonterra is aiming to adjust its sales base to increase the proportion of revenue generated by its portfolio of nutritional brands, while also increasing its focus on emerging markets.
AUS: WCB board turn down Bega Cheese takeover bid
Australian dairy processor Warrnambool Cheese and Butter Factory has told shareholders to reject the “inadequate” takeover offer from peer Bega Cheese.
US: Bi-Lo, Winn-Dixie chains to list as Southeastern Grocers
The owner of US retail chains Bi-Lo and Winn-Dixie plans to list the business as Southeastern Grocers.
Interview: “Low performance” HKScan’s greatest challenge – CEO
Scandinavian meat-to-convenience foods group HKScan has downgraded its operating profit forecast for 2013 today. While the company has delivered on the turnaround plan it unveiled last year, it said export pressures and a shift in its product mix would hit EBIT. Nevertheless, CEO Hannu Kottonen insists HKScan will continue to drive operational improvements in the coming 12 months.
Comment: Premier focused on long-term with CFO appointment
The news that Premier Foods CFO Mark Moran will leave the company has again thrown into the spotlight the financial pressure the Hovis maker is under. However, in former Dairy Crest executive Alastair Murray the company has found what looks like a safe pair of hands and, significantly, the move emphasises Premier‘s commitment to building a stable management team in the long term.
On the move: Kroger in safe hands after Dillon exit
US supermarket chain Kroger is fighting fit. The company has been growing market share for a number of quarters and a focus on expanding its store count has fuelled further expansion. The news CEO Dave Dillon is standing down will see him go out on top. Waiting in the wings is chief operating officer Rodney McMullen. The long-time Kroger executive represents a safe pair of hands as the retailer pushes on with its growth plans. Katy Askew reports.
SPAIN: Bakery firm Panrico mulls 1,900 job cuts
Loss-making Spanish bakery group Panrico is considering cutting 1,900 jobs as it looks to try to put itself on a firmer financial footing.
US: General Mills makes sustainability pledges for “priority” ingredients
General Mills has pledged to “sustainably source” its ten “priority” ingredients – including wheat, dairy and cocoa – by 2020.
Interview: Cargill enters China’s challenging poultry sector
Cargill this week opened its first animal protein plant in China. With demand for protein soaring in the country, the move looks a sound one from the US agribusiness giant. However, the poultry sector in China can be a challenging place to do business.