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December 18, 2020

Food for thought – the most-read opinion pieces on just-food in 2020

Which of the opinion pieces from just-food's team of industry experts gave you food for thought in 2019? Here are the top ten most-read.

By Dean Best

In a year that turned the world on its axis, there was plenty to chew over, not least in our sector, where Covid-19 has had a significant impact on the market and on consumer behaviour. How the virus could shape the industry featured heavily in the list of the top ten most-read opinion pieces on in 2020.

Why change is inevitable in the wake of Covid-19 In April, just-food’s US columnist and industry veteran Victor Martino set out what he sees as the four stages of change that will impact the country’s food industry – with analysis that will resonate beyond US borders.

Nestle’s Fairtrade move is wrong – and very wrong now July saw just-food’s contributing editor Ben Cooper expressed his opposition to Nestlé’s decision to end Fairtrade certification for its flagship KitKat chocolate brand in the UK and Ireland.

Don’t write off emerging brands amid Big Food’s Covid-19 bounce In the early months of the pandemic, many of Big Food’s legacy brands were having their day in the sun in the US, boosted by pantry-loading. In May, Victor Martino argued challenger brands could still – and would – compete.

French fries in China – big opportunities and high hurdles In February, just-food’s China columnist Peter Peverelli explored the local market for French fries, a category growing rapidly but with barriers to entry for foreign suppliers.

Why Tesco’s right to be cautious about compostable packaging March saw David Burrows look at the details Tesco announced on the packaging it wanted suppliers to use in the UK.

How Covid-19 might shape consumer trends in China Packaged-food companies mulling the post-Covid-19 consumer will be watching China with interest, Peter Peverelli wrote in April.

Aryzta’s options in wake of investor battle The embattled European bakery giant endured months of distractions and wrangling between management and its largest shareholders over the composition of its board and, in September, Simon Harvey looked at what could come next for the manufacturer.

Covid-19’s snacking consumers spark D2C flurry How consumers shop for food has changed in some very noticeable ways during the pandemic – and the online channel is one area to have grown in importance, as GlobalData explored in May.

Blackstone’s Oatly backing may unsettle some but there are benefits In late summer, dairy-alternative darling Oatly faced criticism for accepting investment from private-equity giant Blackstone – but, argued Dean Best, those who want a more sustainable food system should see the advantages.

How Covid-19 might shape food M&A In December last year, M&A advisor Stefan Kirk outlined on just-food why food M&A had dried up, attributing a statistical decline in deals to the absence of any recession looming on the horizon. Out of the blue, Covid-19 arrived to add to that downturn but, in May, Stefan argued the virus might provide the stimulus needed to shake more life into the M&A market once the epidemic recedes.

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