Blog: Dean BestKey industry insight for you while just-food takes a break

Dean Best | 26 August 2013

It's a public holiday in the UK today (26 August) - thankfully the sun is just breaking through here in south London to help us bask in our Ashes victory - and, while we take a day's break, here are some of last week's top interviews, comment and analysis in case you missed them.

The just-food interview: Lindt CEO Ernst Tanner
After Lindt & Sprungli posted a set of solid first-half results, the chief executive of the Swiss chocolate maker talks to just-food about the company's success in growing sales in North America and Europe and its patient strategy in emerging markets.

Interview: Raisio sanguine about brand performance
Raisio, the Finland-based group behind Benecol, Fox's confectionery and Sugar puffs cereal, saw branded sales fall in the first half of 2013. However, CEO Matti Rihko tells Dean Best the company is sharpening its portfolio to improve the performance of its branded business - and is eyeing more expansion in the years ahead.

just the answer - Carlos Ramirez, Powerful Yogurt CEO
Powerful Yogurt launched in the US last year, claiming to be the first Greek yoghurt designed for men. After securing retail listings in the Tri-state area, the brand is expanding further along the East Coast and has just announced plans to do business across the Atlantic in the UK and Ireland. Dean Best speaks to founder and CEO Carlos Ramirez about the competition in yoghurt and his ambitions for the brand.

Comment: Co-op should tread carefully in online push
To much fanfare, The Co-operative Group confirmed that it will be the last of the "big five" UK retailers to throw its hat in the ring and enter the online channel. While the company is emphasising the growth potential offered by rapidly expanding online sales, Katy Askew suggests that the grocer will have to think outside the box if it is to combine an online offering with what remains its point of difference - convenience.

Shopper trends: Why you need to focus on in-store experience
With growth in the FMCG sector hard to come by, IRI consultant Rod Street argues more companies must spend more time trying to improve a consumer's shopping experience.

Consuming issues: Salmon industry CSR scheme should be welcomed
The Global Salmon Initiative (GSI), a joint commitment to raising sustainability standards signed by 15 major producers of farmed salmon, has been hailed as a game changer. Ben Cooper casts his eye over the new accord.

Best bits: Another blow for NZ, the "Saudi Arabia of milk"
New Zealand, dubbed in some quarters as the Saudi Arabia of milk, has suffered another knock to its reputation, with another recall - this time over nitrate levels in ingredients headed for China. After the botulism scare surrounding Fonterra, this is another below for the country's dairy sector.

On the money: Hain looks to new financial year with confidence
An upbeat Hain Celestial has said continued sales growth in the US and in the UK, as well as productivity savings - including from the integration of recent acquisition Ella's Kitchen - will help it grow profits in the next 12 months.

On the money: Ahold to monitor pricing in "volume pressured" US
Dutch retailer Ahold has said it will continue to evaluate its price positioning in the US as retailers in the country face pressure on sales volumes.

In the spotlight: Pinnacle Foods looks to year ahead with Wish-Bone
Pinnacle Foods has had an eventful six months. Kicking off the year with the launch of an IPO, the US food group went on to report impressive first-quarter earnings. While first-half earnings dipped somewhat last week, the firm's deal to buy Unilever's Wish-Bone business could signal a positive year ahead for the frozen food to baking mix maker.

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Tesco-Booker deal gets green light as UK grocery landscape shifts

Here in the UK, we've had two significant pieces of M&A news in the grocery retail channel in the last 24 hours....

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Getting the basics right online

Failed launches cost grocery brands operating in the UK over GBP30m per year - but ironing out mistakes made in listing new products online could help improve marketeers' chances of success, according...

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US trade body GMA loses another high-profile member

Just months after Campbell Soup Co. decided to leave The Grocery Manufacturers Association, the US lobby group is to see another major member leave....

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