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Nestle and R&R Ice Cream confirmed that they are in joint venture talks, a tie up that could reshape the global ice cream sector. Meanwhile, the historic Trans-Pacific Partnership was signed – to mixed reactions from the food sector. Here are just-food's quotes of the week. 

"The vision of the proposed joint venture is to grow a unique consumer and customer focused ice cream business serving all channels, delivering innovative, high quality ice cream through investment in people, process and products." Ibrahim Najafi, R&R's chief executive, said of the ice cream group's tie up talks with Swiss food giant Nestle

"Dairy has been very hard to resolve and New Zealand has managed to get some progress against the odds. Our team has done well to lift the deal from where it stood at the ministerial meeting in Maui. While I am very disappointed that the deal falls far short of TPP’s original ambition to eliminate all tariffs, there will be some useful gains for New Zealand dairy exporters in key TPP markets such as the US, Canada and Japan. Greater benefits will be seen in future years as tariffs on some product lines are eliminated." John Wilson, chairman of New Zealand dairy giant Fonterra, says the  Trans-Pacific Partnership is “far from perfect” for New Zealand dairy

"In many parts of the world, food and agricultural products still face the legacy of high import barriers. We believe the Trans-Pacific Partnership will allow food to move more freely across borders from places of plenty to places of need, which benefits farmers and consumers around the world. Over time, the most successful countries have been those that embraced international trade. Modern trade agreements like the TPP will continue that trend, while also setting high standards for labour, human rights and sustainability." Cargill chairman and CEO David MacLennan sees benefits at both ends of the supply chain

"How would we improve margins? Number one is selling more of our premium brands – B&J, Talenti [the US gelato firm Unilever acquired last year], Magnum. Number two, expanding and growing our impulse markets the out of home markets across the world. Number three, building our retail offering across the world… all of these are things that are at the same time about growth, but also about helping expand margin. Magnum Pleasure stores we would use more as a branding mechanism across the world, whereas Ben & Jerry's and Happiness are valuable business contributors both to the growth and profit." Unilever refreshments cheif Kevin Havelock on the benefits of branded retail

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