European Business News – Week ending December 10, 2010

 Breaking News
  • Ready Meals – Not Ready For the Future New research (1) published by Eating Better, a powerful alliance of more than 50 organisations, shows that supermarkets need to shake up their ready meal ranges. They are not catering for the growing number of flexitarian customers who are cutting back on their meat eating for their health and the health of the planet (2). [...]...
  • Top 100 Largest Spirits Brands Revealed The world’s most popular alcoholic drink in 2017 was the South Korean soju brand Jinro, owned by Hite-Jinro, according to the IWSR Real 100, the definitive ranking of the world’s largest spirits brands by volume. Selling almost 76m nine-litre cases, Jinro retains its number one position from last year, and once again by a staggering [...]...
  • Ireland’s Most Sustainable Paper-free Cup Launched Ireland’s only completely paper-free compostable cup has been launched by Zeus, the Irish global packaging solutions company. Unlike other compostable cups, the Treefree Cup contains absolutely no paper product, making it the most sustainable single-use cup available in the Irish market. Additionally, to tackle the composting waste problem in Ireland, the cups and lids will be [...]...
  • GEA Supplies Largest Buttermaking Machine in India GEA recently sold its first buttermaking machine type BUE to an Indian dairy producer. Creamy Foods Limited, located in the state Uttar-Pradesh, placed an order for a GEA BUE 6000, which has a capacity of up to 6000kg/h butter, making it the largest buttermaking machine in India. The new machine will be brought into operation in [...]...
  • Clearance For Arla Foods UK and Yeo Valley Deal The British Competition and Markets Authority (CMA) has cleared Arla Foods UK’s proposed acquisition of Yeo Valley Dairies, a subsidiary of the Yeo Valley Group. The transaction will give the farmer-owned dairy co-operative the rights to use the Yeo Valley brand in milk, butter, spreads and cheese under an intellectual property licence with Yeo Valley. The [...]...

European Business News – Week ending December 10, 2010

December 10
14:07 2010

Food processors are continuing to face confusion and difficulties regarding the health claims which can be made for specific functional food products. Last week, Danone called upon the European Food Safety Authority (EFSA), which regulates this area, to amend the way in which it evaluates the scientific evidence upon which health claims are based. About 80% of health claims were rejected by EFSA during 2010.

According to some probiotic food manufacturers, EFSA is demanding that processors are clear and precise about the claims that they are making but yet the regulator’s own guidelines are far from clear and precise.

As the lines between the food and pharmaceutical industries become increasingly blurred and with ‘health and wellness’ two of the most important consumer concerns, it is essential that this matter is resolved quickly.

Indeed, a report, just published by the European Commission and the OECD, has revealed that over half of the population in the EU is now overweight or obese, which has serious implications for health and the health systems in Member States. Some would argue that the food industry has contributed to the obesity problem. Entitled ‘Health at a Glance: Europe 2010’, the report serves to highlight the fundamental link between nutrition and health.

Spirits & Wine

Consolidation within the international spirits and wine industry is expected to accelerate following the decision by Fortune Brands to spin off its Home & Security and Golf businesses to concentrate on premium spirits. A streamlined Fortune Brands will be focused on its Beam Global Spirits & Wine unit, which has annual sales of $2.5 billion and is the largest US-based spirits company. It is the world leader in the growing bourbon category, with its Jim Beam, Maker’s Mark and Knob Creek brands. Other global brands include Courvoisier cognac, Canadian Club whisky, Laphroaig and Teacher’s Scotch whisky, and Sauza tequila.

Although the fourth largest premium spirits business in the world, Beam Global is a long way behind leaders Diageo and Pernod Ricard, and is likely to become an acquisition or merger target.


A couple of weeks after the death of its founder, Bernard Matthews, Britain’s largest turkey processor, Bernard Matthews Farms, was again in the news by winning the Institute for Turnaround Europe’s Top Turnaround Award 2010 for a private company. The group is mid-way through a four year rehabilitation programme as it seeks to recover from the adverse financial impact of an outbreak of avian flu in early 2007.

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