Brand New: Nestle, General Mills, Calbee and more big names feature in our round-up

By Pearly Neo

- Last updated on GMT

Nestle, General Mills, Calbee and more big names feature in this edition of Brand New. ©Getty Images
Nestle, General Mills, Calbee and more big names feature in this edition of Brand New. ©Getty Images

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Nestle, General Mills, Calbee and more big names feature in this edition of Brand New.

‘Difficult economic environment’: Nestle sees slower growth in APAC despite positive China, India results

Nestle’s recent half-year financial results report revealed slower growth in APAC compared to its other operating regions due to continuing economic difficulties and likely local struggles with the COVID-19 pandemic.

According to Nestle’s statement on its half-year report, overall organic growth (representing the growth of the business after removing the impact of acquisitions, divestitures and other changes) for the whole company was 8.1% with total reported sales increasing 1.5% year-on-year to CHF41.8bn (US$46bn).

In the Asia, Oceania and sub-Saharan Africa (AOA) region, Nestle saw 6.8% overall organic growth to reach CHF10.9bn (US$12bn)  – This was lower than the growth seen in its other operating regions of Europe, Middle East and North Africa (EMENA) at 8.0% (to hit CHF12.6bn / US$13.9bn) and the Americas (AMS) at 8.9% (to hit CHF18.3bn / US$20.1bn).

Still in the mix: General Mills’ Betty Crocker marks 100-years in the Middle East with NPD and ‘gender neutral’ comms

Bakery giant Betty Crocker is marking its upcoming 100-year anniversary in the Middle East with NPD in its cake mix range and a shift to gender neutral marketing and messaging that has won multiple awards in the region

The Betty Crocker brand originated in the United States in 1921 and today is owned by F&B giant General Mills – the brand is also the market leader for cake mixes by far in the Middle East, making it unsurprising that so much emphasis is being placed on its anniversary in the region.

“Nine out of 10 cakes [made from cake mixes] in the Gulf Cooperation Council (GCC, comprising Bahrain, Kuwait, Oman, Qatar, Saudi Arabia, and the United Arab Emirates) are Betty Crocker cakes,”​ General Mills General Manager – Middle East and Africa Ali Shaikh told FoodNavigator-Asia​.

Going green: Snack giant Calbee switches to renewable electricity sources at Kagamihara factory

Japanese snack giant Calbee is revamping its energy policy at its Kagamihara factory, leading to the firm emitting zero greenhouse gases through its electricity consumption.

The manufacturer has opted to purchase electricity directly from Chubu Electric Power, which comes from renewable hydro and solar sources, instead of using the government’s the J-credit system to offset its greenhouse gas emissions.

The Kagamihara factory mainly produces potato chips, kataage potato, Jagarico and Jagabee.

According to Satoshi Yoshida, manager at Calbee’s public relations department, it means that the Kagamihara factory will now emit zero greenhouse gas through its electricity consumption.

‘Balancing nutrition and enjoyment’: Nestle Indonesia highlights fortification and reformulation efforts after ‘unhealthy’ food scandal

Nestle Indonesia has responded to the recent controversy that 60% of its global portfolio is made up of ‘unhealthy’ foods, stressing that reformulation and fortification are key priorities as it seeks to balance ‘nutrition and enjoyment’.

The scandal ensued when a presentation meant for top Nestle executives was leaked, containing the revelations that only 37% of Nestle products (by revenue) have a rating of over 3.5 under the Australia-New Zealand Health Star Rating system, which the company acknowledges as a ‘recognised definition of health’​.

In response to the entire controversy, Nestle Indonesia has also guaranteed the safety and quality of its products to the public, assuring that a ‘company-wide project’​ is underway to improve its portfolio as well.

“In Indonesia, we produce and distribute our products in compliance to the prevailing laws and regulation in Indonesia including nutrition, quality, and safety requirements from BPOM, and Halal regulation. We guarantee the quality and safety of our products for our consumers,”​ Nestle Indonesia Corporate Affairs Director Debora R Tjandrakusuma told FoodNavigator-Asia​.

Full steam ahead: UAE dairy firm Koita announces online and offline expansion in Singapore

UAE-based milk company Koita is aggressively expanding its online and offline presence in Singapore, with a recent launch into one major supermarket chain, and a listings in the works for a global e-commerce player.

Distributed by Ramanico Delights, Koita’s Italian organic dairy milk, plant-based beverages as well as lactose-free dairy milk was recently introduced into supermarket chain Cold Storage. Products are also listed into another major supermarket chain NTUC.

Online, Koita’s products are available on several e-commerce sites including Lazada, NTUC online, Shopee as well as Ramanico Delights’ online store. The firm is now in the process of listing on Amazon Grocery in Singapore.

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