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Heinz and Unilever to exit frozen foods

Both Heinz and Unilever have announced preliminary plans to divest their frozen food businesses. Unilever said it was undertaking a study into ‘strategic options’ for the future of its frozen foods business in western Europe. This encompasses the main brands – Iglo, Findus and BirdsEye – and will cover the 11 countries in Europe where […]

Posted 11 October 2005

Uniq CEO plans reorganisation

Geoff Eaton, the new chief executive of Uniq plc, has announced a programme of initatives for the convenience food group, in the face of a challenging trading environment. A major reorganisation of the UK division sees the creation of six, entrepreneurially-led, customer focused business units – three desserts businesses, sandwiches and dips, prepared salads, and […]

Posted 11 October 2005

Walkers closes one plant and opens another

PepsiCo is closing the Walkers crisps factory in Swansea after 50 years at the south Wales site, which was formerly owned by Smiths Crisps. It has also announced a new factory to open at Skelmersdale, Lancashire in March 2006. All 250 workers will lose their jobs in Swansea, but will be offered alternative posts at […]

Posted 11 October 2005

Lady Jay to head FFB

Lady Sylvia Jay CBE will become the new chair of Food from Britain in 2006. She takes over the role from Gordon Summerfield, who commented,“Sylvia Jay is an excellent appointment. Her knowledge of the food and drink industry will undoubtedly assist exporters in breaking through the £10 million barrier for the first time in nearly […]

Posted 11 October 2005

Industry slims on fat, salt and sugar

The UK food and drink industry is revolutionising the nutritional profile of its products, according to a nationwide survey. In September 2004, the Food and Drink Federation (FDF) issued a Food and Health Manifesto which set out a series of commitments ranging from reductions in salt, sugar and fat, to action on portion sizes and […]

Posted 11 October 2005

Rexam converts to aluminium in Berlin

One of the world’s largest packaging companies is planning to convert its beverage can plant in Berlin to aluminium. The move is in response to Germany’s planned introduction of a nationwide return system for one-way containers in May 2006. The high scrap value of aluminium makes it the most practical solution for the system, as […]

Posted 11 October 2005

Nestle to grow its own

The board of Nestle SA is to set up the Nestle Growth Fund with £500 million to be invested over five to seven years. This new fund is to help Nestle grow new science and nutrition businesses and ntegrate them into the group’s mainstream business units. This will contribute to the group’s expansion into health, […]

Posted 11 October 2005

Lax laws loom as boozy Brits drink on

Soaring alcohol sales in the UK are causing concern among health ministers as imminent changes in licensing laws could allow the beverages to be sold round the clock in pubs and shops. The new licence laws, due in November, have been proposed despite reports that alcohol sales have increased by almost ten per cent in […]

Posted 8 September 2005

Rajah powder doesn’t curry favour

Curry powders sold by Somerfields, Budgens and Kwik Save had to be removed from sale after they were found to contain illegal dye Sudan 1. The dye was found in batches of Rajah Premium Hot and Mild Curry Powders. The contaminated products, sold by BE International Foods, had a best-before date of June 2007 and […]

Posted 8 September 2005

Early deaths warning from fats

Health experts have warned that the nation is eating too many foods containing high amounts of fat, saturated fat and sugar, which are likely to lead to premature deaths. Sales of fresh fruit and vegetables have dropped by nearly two per cent, despite government health campaigns to persuade people to eat five portions of fruit […]

Posted 8 September 2005

Skills council at Liberal meeting

Improve, the food and drink sector skills council, will be joining the Liberal Democrats at their annual party conference in Blackpool this month. Paul Wilkinson, the chairman of Improve, is joining a panel organised by the Sector Skills Development Agency (SSDA), which will present a fringe event at the conference on 19 September. Similar events […]

Posted 8 September 2005

Tough trading but Nestle nurtures newcomers

This year’s trading has proven a challenge for Nestle, although its first half report for 2005 showed strong organic growth of 5.2%. Meanwhile, sales in Swiss francs increased 2.4 per cent despite negative impacts of currencies of -1.8 and divestitures of -1.0%. Consolidated sales grew to CHF 43,474 million, an increase of 2.4% over the […]

Posted 8 September 2005

Sugar production forecast

In the past few months, growing conditions in all Danisco’s production countries have offered strong potential for the growth of sugar beets up to the September to December harvesting period. With recent favourable growing conditions, the sugar beet harvest is expected to yield a sugar production slightly above Danisco’s European Union quotas in Denmark, Sweden, […]

Posted 8 September 2005

Honeybees to suffer from stingy cash cuts

The British honeybee population is under threat by Government cuts, according to an organisation that represents small agricultural businesses. The Forum of Private Business (FPB) says the bees make a huge contribution to the agriculture industry by spreading pollen, but the Government has a bee in its bonnet about cutting costs. In three years time […]

Posted 8 September 2005