Dairy Crest, Nestlé and campylobacter top week’s headlines

By Laurence Gibbons contact

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Waste management, Anaerobic digestion

Dairy Crest, Nestlé and campylobacter all feature in this week’s edition of Good Week/ Bad Week.

Dairy Crest made the news for less than virtuous reasons, after it a pre-tax profit fall of 59% from £54.2M to £22.1M

Its group revenue was down by 4% from £1.4bn to 1.3bn driven by £36.3M in costs over the past year.

The major retailers also came under pressure from Action on Sugar to follow Tesco’s lead and slash sugar across own-label soft drinks.

Campylobacter

Also in bad news, the Food Standards Agency claimed a third of the UK population could be affected by campylobacter at some stage in their lifetime.

This figure was based on the current infection rate of more than 250,000 people a year.

Campylobacter made the headlines for positive reasons too, as Faccenda Foods cut its presence in its whole birds by a whopping 80% thanks to the use of SonoSteam technology.

The firm’s md Andy Dawkins told us in an exclusive video interview that it plans to launch the UK’s first ever continuous production line application of SonoSteam.

There was good news out of Nestlé which reached its target of zero waste to landfill at its Fawdon factory in Newcastle upon Tyne.

It converted excess Toffee Crisp and Rolo ingredients in its anaerobic digester into biogas. This biogas is now meeting about 8% of the site’s energy needs.

A whopping 4t of solid waste and 200,000l of liquid waste are converted each day to produce 200kW of electricity at the site.

Profit

And finally, Marks & Spencer posted its first full-year profit rise in four years.

Food sales were up 3.4% or 0.6% like-for-like as underlying pre-tax profit before tax was up 6.1% to £661.2M. Group sales were up to £10.3bn.

The results were driven by 1,700 new products launches in the past year and 62 new Simply Food stores opening.

Retail analyst Conlumino said it was down to strength of relationship between M&S and its food suppliers.

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