Mondelez Plans to Focus More on Healthy Snacks

By Lauren R. Hartman, Product Development Editor

Sep 11, 2015

Mondelez International Inc., the company behind the Oreo and Cadbury brands, says it plans for 50 percent of its portfolio to contain healthy snacks within the next five years. More than a third of its total revenue currently includes healthy snacks, according to Mark Clouse, executive vice president and chief growth officer.

The company joins other major food companies, such as Kellogg, General Mills and more in the shift from foods perceived by some consumers as too processed to those considered healthier. Clouse said on Sept. 10 that Mondelez is looking to simplify ingredients and nutritional information for its products as it develops new goods to meet consumer demand for healthier items. He also said the company expects to focus 70 percent of new product development efforts on healthy goods over the next five years.

Mondelez maintained its forecast for 2015 organic net revenue to climb at least 3 percent. The company, which makes products such as Ritz crackers and Trident gum, has been cutting costs to offset weak growth, and said it would reinvest some of its cost savings into additional advertising and consumer support. Cost-cutting has become common for major packaged food companies, which are up against volatile economic conditions overseas and shifting tastes that favor foods marketed as fresher or more natural.

Its split from Kraft Foods in 2012 was to allow Mondelez to focus on the snack brands it took, like Oreo and Chips Ahoy, while Kraft Foods chose the North America grocery brands including Jell-O and Oscar Mayer before Kraft was purchased by H.J. Heinz Co. this year.

Last month activist investor Bill Ackman's Pershing Square announced that it took a 7.5-percent stake in Mondelez that was worth about $5.5 billion.

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