“Good performances in France, Switzerland, Austria and the Netherlands, and a recovery in Spain and Portugal supported the growth in western Europe,” the company stated. “The GB region, Germany, Italy and Greece were more challenged.
“There were strong performances from petcare and Nescafé Dolce Gusto across Western Europe and we saw good growth from innovations in several categories.
“Highlights included Nescafé Gold and Azzera premium soluble coffee, Fresh Up and Buitoni Fiesta in frozen pizza, Maggi snacking noodles in ambient culinary and the launch of premium chocolate tablets Les Recettes de L'Atelier in France.”
Nestlé Waters recorded strong UK growth in its Nestlé Pure Life and Buxton brands, while Nespresso grew in all regions.
In central and eastern Europe, Russia and Ukraine drove the growth in a deteriorating economic environment, said Nestlé. Petcare, Nescafé Dolce Gusto, soluble coffee, particularly Gold Blend, and confectionery with KitKat were the highlights.
Innovation and initiatives with premium products had driven growth in Europe as a whole, the business said. However, it stressed that the European trading environment continued to be volatile and intense, with deflationary pressure increasing during the year and consumer confidence very fragile, reducing price flexibility.
The company reported European sales of 15.2bn Swiss Francs (£10.4bn) in full-year results for 2014, comprising 1.5% organic growth and 2.2% real internal growth.
It said it had pushed up its trading operating profit margin by 30 basis points in the region, to 15.3%, helped by internal growth and increased efficiency.
Nestlé reported total full-year 2014 sales of 91.6bn Swiss Francs (£62.7bn), reflecting 4.5% organic growth and 2.3% internal growth.
“These are strong results, building on the good growth of past years and delivered in a soft trading environment,” said ceo Paul Bulcke. “While delivering in the short term, we remain focused on our business long term, strengthening the foundations of future growth.
“We expect 2015 to be similar to 2014 and we aim to achieve organic growth of around 5% with improvements in margins, underlying earnings per share in constant currencies and capital efficiency.”