Global Consumer Goods Associations to Merge

March 6, 2009

The boards of CIES–The Food Business Forum, the Global Commerce Initiative (GCI) and the participants of the Global CEO Forum agreed in February to combine their assets and found a single global consumer goods industry association. The goal is to improve the way the consumer goods industry meets the needs of the world’s ever more knowledgeable and demanding consumers.

“This represents a step-change in the way our industry’s trading partners will be equipped to meet the complex challenges of a global value chain,” said Pierre-Olivier Beckers, president/CEO of Delhaize Group, a Belgium-based international food retailer, and chairman of CIES–The Food Business Forum.

“I’m particularly pleased that we are showing as an industry that we can move this forward in the present economic context.  Ultimately this will bring more value to consumers, more benefits to all stakeholders.”

“In the consumer goods industry, our goal is to provide shoppers with brands and products that deliver better performance, quality and value day in and day out,” added A.G. Lafley, chairman/CEO of Procter & Gamble and co-chairman of GCI and the 2008 Global CEO Forum. “With this new industry body we shall be able to address non-competitive issues together so that shoppers benefit even more from the wide assortment and the outstanding everyday value this industry can and does bring to the economy and to society."

The global platform will be focused on collaborative, non-competitive issues within the consumer goods industry, including: 
  • Providing a platform for networking between trading partners and other key stakeholders at both CEO and operational level.
  • Identifying industry priorities and developing recommended action plans when and where appropriate.
  • Developing processes to improve the efficiency of the industry globally.
  • Identifying best practices and supporting their implementation.
  • Continuing to meet the unique requirements of retailers and manufacturers.
  • Continuing to develop the industry’s portfolio of programs to educate and promote best practices.

Next steps will assemble interim governing bodies to lay the groundwork for the launch of the new association after submitting the project for approval by the group’s boards. The Global Commerce Initiative, established in October 1999, is supported by Grocery Manufacturers Assn. and Food Marketing Institute.