Posts Tagged ‘Mondelez International’

Mondelez switches Triscuit to Non-GMO Verified

August 12th, 2017
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Confectionery, food, and beverage firm Mondelez International is switching its Triscuit cracker brand to the Non-GMO Verified certification in the US.

The company said consumer demand had prompted the move, citing data from market researchers The Hartman Group from this year, which demonstrated that more than half of Americans are looking for non-GMO food and beverages.

Mondelez has co-operated with US non-profit the Non-GMO Project, which provides the certification for companies looking to make the switch.

The company worked to source oil and seasonings that meet the certification.

Triscuit North America brand manager Kailey Clark said: “The Triscuit brand has evolved throughout its 100-plus-year history by delivering what consumers want, whether that’s new flavors; quick, everyday recipe solutions; or now, Non-GMO Project Verified snacking options.”

Clark further added: “The Non-GMO Project Verified seal is the gold standard. It is the most trusted label among consumers, and we are proud to offer that level of product transparency to Triscuit customers.”

Triscuit Cracker boxes bearing the seal started rolling out to retailers nationwide in late July, with the full product line expected to follow by the end of next month.

Non-GMO Project associate director Courtney Pineau said: “We are thrilled Triscuit Crackers has converted its entire portfolio to be made with Non-GMO Project Verified ingredients.

“As an organization, we believe that consumers have a right to know what is in their food and have access to non-GMO choices.”



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Barry Callebaut completes acquisition of chocolate production facility in Belgium

January 14th, 2017
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Barry Callebaut AG has successfully closed the acquisition of the chocolate production facility from Mondelez International in Halle, Belgium.

Barry Callebaut AG has successfully closed the acquisition of the chocolate production facility from Mondelez International in Halle, Belgium, as announced on September 15, 2016. This follows the completion of works council consultations and closing conditions.

The factory in Halle, which will be integrated into Barry Callebaut’s global manufacturing network as of January 1, 2017, will expand the company’s production capacity for quality Belgian chocolate and fillings. The transaction also includes a long-term agreement for the supply of an additional 30,000 tons of liquid chocolate per year to Mondelez International, which will start early this year.

With annual sales of about CHF 6.7 billion (EUR 6.1 billion / US$6.8 billion) in fiscal year 2015/16, the Zurich-based Barry Callebaut Group is the world’s leading manufacturer of high-quality chocolate and cocoa products – from sourcing and processing cocoa beans to producing the finest chocolates, including chocolate fillings, decorations and compounds. The Group runs more than 50 production facilities worldwide and employs a diverse and dedicated global workforce of close to 10.000 people.

The Barry Callebaut Group is committed to make sustainable chocolate the norm by 2025, to help ensure future supplies of cocoa and to improve farmer livelihoods. It supports the Cocoa Horizons Foundation in its goal to shape a sustainable cocoa and chocolate future.


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Nestle loses EU Kit Kat trade mark tussle with Cadbury

December 24th, 2016
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Nestle  has lost a tussle with rival Mondelez International  over the validity of its EU trade mark for the shape of the Kit Kat chocolate biscuit bar in an EU court which said it should be re-examined.

Cadbury Schweppes – now owned by Mondelez International – asked the European Union Intellectual Property Office (EUIPO) to declare the Kit Kat four fingers trade mark invalid in 2007.

The EUIPO dismissed that application on the grounds that the Kit Kat shape had acquired “distinctive character” through its use.

On Thursday the EU’s second-highest court annulled that dismissal.

The EUIPO will have to re-examine whether the Kit Kat four fingers bar has acquired distinctive character through its use within all EU member states, not just across the EU generally, the General Court of the EU said in a statement.

In 2006 the EUIPO registered the Kit Kat shape as a trade mark in sweets, bakery products, pastries, biscuits, cakes and waffles.

The General Court, based in Luxembourg, said the EUIPO had not established use of the trade mark in bakery products, pastries, cakes and waffles.

If a trade mark is registered for a category of goods which also has sub-categories, then it applies only to goods where it has been put to use, the court said.

In addition, Nestle would have to prove that when it applied in 2002, its Kit Kat shape had already gained distinctive character through use in all 15 of the states that had joined the bloc by then.

It was not enough for Nestle “to show that a significant proportion of the relevant public throughout the EU, merging all the member states and regions, perceives a mark as an indication of the commercial origin of the goods designated by the mark,” the Court said.

The Court said EUIPO had found that Kit Kat shape had acquired distinctive character in 10 countries – Denmark, Germany, Spain, France, Italy, the Netherlands, Austria, Finland, Sweden and the UK – but not in countries including Belgium, Ireland, Greece and Portugal.

Nestle said it was pleased the court had acknowledged that the four finger-shape trade mark has acquired distinctiveness in 10 member states of the EU.

“The four finger-shape has been used throughout the EU by Nestle for decades and is known by consumers as being KIT KAT,” the company said. “We continue to review the findings and consider our position.”

Nestle has the option of appealing against the decision before the EU’s highest court within two months.

Source: Reuters


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New Technology to Cut Sugar in Chocolate

December 6th, 2016
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Big food companies that include Nestle, Mondelez International Inc (MDLZ), and PepsiCo Inc. are scrambling to create healthier products to reduce their dependence on treats full of sugar and salt. It comes as the U.K., Mexico and some U.S. cities implement sugar taxes to help fight childhood obesity and diabetes, which affects four times as many people now than in 1980. The World Health Organization has said increasing the price of sugary drinks by 20% would reduce consumption by a fifth.

Nestle said it had devised a new technology that has the potential to reduce sugar in some of its confectionery products by up to 40% without affecting the taste. They have found a way using only natural ingredients to change the structure of sugar particles. By hollowing out the crystals, Nestle said each particle dissolves more quickly on the tongue, so less sugar can be used in chocolate.

“Our scientists have discovered a completely new way to use a traditional, natural ingredient,” said Nestle’s chief technology officer, Stefan Catsicas.

“Real food in nature is not something smooth and homogeneous. It’s full of cavities, crests and densities. So by reproducing this variability, we are capable to restore the same sensation”, said Nestle’s top researcher. “If you look with an electron microscope into an apple, that’s exactly what you see”.

The announcement comes as a global obesity epidemic ramps up pressure on processed food makers to make their products healthier. Nestle and Mondelez have all been working to reduce sugar, fat and salt, as consumers increasingly opt for fresher, healthier options.

Nestle said it was patenting its findings and would begin to use the faster-dissolving sugar across a range of its confectionery products from 2018. The company declined to say whether it will use the technology in other product categories, as it’s waiting for the patent to be published, a spokesman said.

Nestle is not the first company to experiment with designer molecules. Back in 2010 PepsiCo designed a salt molecule that it said would allow it to use less sodium without affecting the taste of its snacks, which include Cheetos.

Source: Abasto


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Mondelez to close Montreal cookie and cracker factory

December 6th, 2016
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Confectionary giant Mondelez has decided to shut down its cookie and cracker plant in Montreal, Canada by 2017.

The move is expected to affect 454 jobs at the facility, reported The Globe snd Mall.

Almost all of the plant’s production will be shifted to Toronto while the remainder of its operations will be carried out by the company’s factory in Portland, Oregon.

The Montreal factory manufactures Christie brand products that include Ritz crackers and Oreo cookies among others.

Mondelez Canada spokeswoman Stephanie Cass was quoted the publication as saying: “Over the next few days and weeks, we look forward to sitting down with the union representatives to discuss severance arrangements.”

Cass confirmed that the remaining five plants of Mondelez in Canada will be unaffected.

The decision taken will not be reversed by the global confectionary even if it is offered any financial assistance from the provincial government, Cass said.

Economy Minister Dominique Anglade has denied getting any request for financial aid from the company.

Anglade said: “We are very open at looking into what we can do with the company but I don’t think it will respond to their needs.”

The Montreal plant closure will be gradually phased out until 2017 end, the company spokeswoman.

Cass was quoted by Global News as saying: “Right now, our focus actually turns to our employees and doing what we can do to support them.”




If not Mondelez, then who?

September 10th, 2016
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Speculation continues after snack and confectionery giant formally withdraws offer to acquire the Hershey Co..

I’m a big fan of punny headlines, but occasionally I do throw in a teaser headline. So, here’s a spoiler alert — I really don’t know who is contemplating acquiring The Hershey Co. or, even more to the point, whether it ever will be acquired. But all of us love speculating about the future and projecting various scenarios. In this instance, I’d like to share some history along with the speculation.

Earlier this week, Mondelez International’s Chairman and CEO Irene Rosenfeld officially announced that it will no longer pursue discussions with Hershey since “there is no actionable path forward toward an agreement… Our proposal to acquire Hershey reflected our conviction that combining our two iconic American companies would create an industry leader with global scale in snacking and confectionery and a strong portfolio of complementary brands.”

That, however, doesn’t mean Mondelez is done looking. As she added, “While we are disappointed in this outcome, we remain disciplined in our approach to creating value, including through acquisitions, and confident that our advantaged platform positions us well for top-tier performance over the long term.”

As those of us who have seen this scenario before can attest, it’s not easy to purchase a company that’s owned by a trust, particularly by a trust that actually controls the company.

The Hershey Trust Co., which was established by Milton Hershey in 1909, became the funding mechanism for the orphanage that Milton and Catherine Hershey founded that same year. The Milton Hershey School, as it’s known today, provides free schooling for needy boys and girls from kindergarten through high school.

Keep in mind that the board members of the Trust own 81 percent of the voting power behind The Hershey Co. Naturally, it’s the Hershey Co. that’s the revenue generator for the Trust. But being owned by a Trust doesn’t necessarily preclude a sale of The Hershey Co.

Those with a good memory can recall that it was the Trust that put The Hershey Co. on the block in 2002, citing a need to diversify its holding to ensure long-term financial stability, only to back off at the last minute after Wrigley outbid Cadbury Schweppes and Nestlé with a $12.5-billion bid.

The decision to walk away stemmed — in part — from a tremendous backlash from the local community as well as a temporary injunction from Pennsylvania’s attorney general in Daphne County Orphans court.

That episode, however, didn’t put an end to the Hershey For Sale saga. Given its command of the U.S. chocolate market, Hershey has always been a tempting target. When Cadbury revisited the scene in 2007, looking to merge with the company, the Trust put the kibosh on a potential deal, prompting an exasperated Rick Lenny, chairman and ceo at the time, to resign. Ironically, Cadbury was gobbled up by Kraft slightly more than two years later.

And that brings us to Mondelez today, which reportedly offered $25 billion for America’s chocolate leader. The Trust’s board rejected that offer. However, five of those members will be leaving, three by year’s end and two by 2017, thanks to — oh wait, doesn’t this sound familiar — a settlement following an investigation by Pennsylvania’s attorney general.

Based on Rosenfeld’s statement, Mondelez will continue to pursue other companies. Although companies such as Lotte and Ferrero have been mentioned by some as potential candidates, I realistically don’t see either being in the mix since I believe those two also want to be buyers. Besides, how big is too big?

But back to Hershey: I’m a bit on the fence on this one. In 2002, I wrote an editorial regarding the possible sale of the chocolate maker entitled, “What would Milton do?” Back then, I believed that Hershey should not be sold. Yes, the Trust having voting control remained an issue, but there were too many arguments to keep the status quo intact: heritage, local economy, jobs, management, etc.

Today, I admit, I initially waffled a bit, given the global economics involved. Nonetheless, I’m still not a fan of mega-mergers and acquisitions. Those so-called synergies typically lead to consolidation, corporate culture wars and consumer callousness. So what would Milton do? I think he’d keep the company independent and continue to make acquisitions. And he’d change either the voting clout of the Trust and/or its membership. And then he’d focus on making the best and most affordable chocolates and candies.

Source: Candy Industry


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Mondelez International Expands Cocoa Life in Indonesia

September 10th, 2016
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Mondelez International announced the successful completion of the first phase of its new partnerships with Swisscontact, Cargill and Wahana Visi Indonesia to expand its Cocoa Life program in Southeast Sulawesi, Indonesia.

With the help of Swisscontact, funded by the Swiss State Secretariat of Economic Affairs (SECO), the program aims to develop sustainable livelihoods for cocoa-farming communities.  The program specifically promotes women’s empowerment and youth participation, creating next generation of cocoa farmers who see potential in the cocoa sector.

In the first phase, Cocoa Life communities developed Community Action Plans (CAPs) and formed Community Development Committees with representatives from all relevant groups in the community, such as youth and women. The committees will implement the CAPs, which feed into village plans, helping communities receive regional government funding and support. Cocoa Life also provides training to increase communities’ awareness of social issues.

Mondelez International is part of the consortium led by Swisscontact, which together with the Millennium Challenge Account-Indonesia, announced in April 2015 the Green Prosperity — Sustainable Cocoa Production Program (GP-SCPP), which aims to reduce poverty and greenhouse gas emissions in the Indonesian cocoa sector.

Cocoa Life is taking root in Indonesia because it’s focused on farmers,” said Andi Sitti Asmayanti, Director of Cocoa Life for Southeast Asia. “Through Cocoa Life, we’re empowering farmers to create action plans with their communities and shape the future of cocoa. We’re helping cocoa-farming families create the kind of communities they want to live in, and inspiring the next generation.”

Swisscontact is working with partners Wahana Visi Indonesia and Cargill on a three-year program to reach 6,000 cocoa farmers and at least 16,000 community members in Southeast Sulawesi. The collaboration with Cargill as supply chain partner focuses on improving good agricultural and environmental practices as part of the farming and environment focus areas in the Cocoa Life program. Swisscontact, through Wahana Visi Indonesia, focuses on implementing interventions as part of livelihoods, community, and youth.

Source: Abasto


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Mondelez International to bring Milka chocolate brand to China

August 6th, 2016
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Mondelez International has revealed that it will enter China’s $2.8 billion chocolate market by launching Milka – its European chocolate brand – in the country from September.

More than a dozen core products will be available alongside special editions for seasonal occasions, as the company looks to capitalise on increased demand within China for chocolate products.

The “move will enhance and accelerate the company’s growth plan by introducing a global power brand to one of the world’s biggest markets,” Mondel?z said.

“When we launched our growth plan last year, we said we’d focus on geographic white spaces where we could accelerate the growth of our core categories and power brands,” said Tim Cofer, chief growth officer for Mondel?z International. “This is a perfect example of that plan in action — launching a snacking category where we’re already a world leader into an emerging market where we have an established, successful presence.

“We see enormous potential for the growth of the chocolate category in China, where consumption today is low — even by emerging market standards. We expect our industry-leading innovation, manufacturing, sales and marketing capabilities to attract more consumers, more often, growing our business and the category.”

And Stephen Maher, president of Mondelez in China, continued: “We’ve been operating in China for over 30 years so we know this market and what it takes to launch a business here. In 2012, we entered the gum category in China for the first time and have now built this into a $200 million business with two much-loved brands. The strength of our iconic Milka brand, combined with a winning recipe uniquely designed for Chinese consumers, gives us great confidence that we’ll be successful with chocolate in China, too.”

One of the world’s largest confectionery companies, Mondelez International’s portfolio includes brands such as Cadbury Dairy Milk, Côte d’Or, Lacta and Toblerone, alongside Milka. The portfolio of snack foods was spun off from Kraft Foods in October 2012.



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Hershey Rejects Mondelez’s $23 Billion Takeover Offer

July 16th, 2016
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For more than a century, Hershey — an American candy icon so well known it gave its name to its Pennsylvania hometown — has stood independent, rebuffing numerous attempts to buy the maker of Kisses and Reese’s Peanut Butter Cups.

Now, it faces one of its biggest challenges yet, in the form of a fellow chocolate giant eager to strike a big takeover deal.

In rebuffing a $23 billion offer from Mondelez International, whose own products run from Oreo cookies to Cadbury chocolate, Hershey is betting that it can stay on its own, or at least fetch a substantially higher price.

But flatly rejecting Mondelez’s offer will be a major test of Hershey’s historically impregnable defense: the charitable trust that effectively wields control.

The offer, made in a letter on June 23 after months of on-and-off discussions between the two companies, would make a blockbuster merger in a year that has been sorely lacking in hugely prominent deals. Moreover, it is a bold move by Mondelez at a time when other would-be deal makers have grown more cautious in the face of uncertain winds in the marketplace and the economy.

Mondelez’s move has also raised questions about whether other food companies will seek to make their own run at Hershey — or whether Mondelez itself may be put into play. After the activist investor William A. Ackman took a big stake in Mondelez nearly a year ago, speculation emerged that he would push for a sale, possibly to Kraft Heinz.

Mondelez, cleaved from what once was Kraft, has offered $107 a share in cash and stock, a 10 percent premium to Hershey’s closing stock price on Wednesday. Hershey, however, said on Thursday that its board had “rejected the indication of interest and determined that it provided no basis for further discussion between Mondelez and the company.”

Mondelez declined to comment.

Hershey would represent the biggest takeover by Mondelez since its former parent bought Cadbury of Britain in a $19 billion deal more than six years ago. That transaction, too, took time, and Cadbury initially rebuffed the American food behemoth’s advances.

Pursuing Hershey is a different matter. A trust holds about 8.4 percent of the candy maker’s shares, but has about 81 percent of the company’s voting power. The shares of the company — both the common and the special Class B shares — are owned by the Milton Hershey School Trust, but are voted on by the Hershey Trust. The Milton Hershey School was founded in 1909 for underprivileged children by the company’s founder and his wife.

The trust has flexed its muscle several times over in the last two decades. When the Wm. Wrigley Jr. Company wanted to buy Hershey at a 42 percent premium in 2002, the trust called off the sale at the last minute.

When the trust became unhappy with Hershey’s performance and deal talks with Cadbury in 2007, it asked for the resignation of six directors.

And when Hershey wanted to challenge Kraft for Cadbury in 2010, a rift between the company and the trust forced the Pennsylvania chocolatier to bow out.



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Mondelez Begins New Research & Development Center in Poland

June 18th, 2016
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At a groundbreaking ceremony today, Mondelez International officially began the construction of a new global Research, Development & Quality (RDQ) site in Bielany Wroclawskie. With a symbolic turn of the first shovelful of soil, company executives and local officials marked this important milestone for Poland and the company’s RDQ network in Europe.

The state-of- the-art research and development facility is expected to open in the first quarter 2017 and will support new products and technologies for beloved Power Brands like Cadbury Dairy Milk, Milka, Barni and Oreo. The site will also be equipped with innovation labs, a new pilot plant and a “collaboration kitchen,” a creative space for new ideas and experimentation.

“This $15 million investment supports our growth strategy to offer innovative chocolate and biscuit products that meet the changing needs of consumers, while maintaining a competitive edge in the markets of tomorrow,” said Rob Hargrove, Executive Vice President, Research, Development & Quality for Mondel?z International.  “Embedding one of our largest research hubs here clearly signals the importance of Poland and Europe within our global RDQ network.”

“We really appreciate the fact that Mondel?z International — our established local business partner — is growing,” said Pawel Hreniak, Lower Silesia Governor. “The investment itself means new jobs, and further promotion of the region, as well as potential cooperation with local partners, which we all are looking forward to.”

“Wroclaw is rapidly becoming the ‘Silicon Valley’ of Poland as well as an incredibly important and strategic location for our business,” said Zoltan Novak, Managing Director, Mondelez Poland and the Baltics.  “Given the vast number of locally renowned technical universities that educate top-notch professionals in the area, we are confident that this talent will help us to create a strong future for our global Power Brands and make the new center a successful hub for innovation.”

The investment will not only boost the company’s already innovative global chocolate and biscuit Power Brands, but it is also expected to host 250 scientists, engineers and other specialists recruited from all over the world, including Poland.  The company’s long-standing presence in the country will grow, with 1,400 employees in the Wroclaw region as well as cooperation with local partners and suppliers.

Source: Abasto


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