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Cadbury cuts middle layer of management; puts CEO in driver’s seat

BY Jenna Duncan

LONDON Cadbury today reported that it is revamping its management structure removing a layer of management and handing over the reins to chief executive officer Todd Stitzer to steer the company’s operational divisions.

“Our four region operational structure will be eliminated, leaving seven business units (listed in Appendix A) which will report directly to [Stitzer],” Cadbury said in a press statement. “At the same time, we are strengthening our global chocolate, gum and candy category structure, further increasing our focus on category development.”

The change will extract the company’s current regional management structure, removing layers and spreading out organizational tasks over other layers. The company hopes that the change will provide “faster decision making, improve in-market execution and ensure a stronger alignment of category strategies and commercial programs,” it has stated.

The removal of the management layer will affect 250 positions, many of them senior managers. Cadbury said that the changes were following a plan started in 2007 to restructure operations.

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Campbell’s, New Jersey governor Corzine celebrate opening of expanded company headquarters

BY Jenna Duncan

CAMDEN, N.J. Campbell Soup Company today held a groundbreaking ceremony for the newly expanded portion of its world headquarters in New Jersey.

The celebration took place at Campbell’s world headquarters at 1 Campbell Place, Camden, N.J. From 10 to 11 a.m. Campbell’s executives were joined by New Jersey governor Jon S. Corzine and other  local community leaders, and Campbell’s president and chief executive officer Douglas R. Conant to discuss details of Campbell’s future business plans and dedication to the Camden community.

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Beverage makers eager to release soft drinks with naturally-derived, zero-calorie Stevia

BY Melissa Valliant

ATLANTA and, PURCHASE, N.Y. Diet beverages may undergo an ingredient makeover within the next few months as a new sweetener called stevia hits the market. Stevia contains no calories or carbohydrates and has a glycemic index of zero.

The sweetener, which originates from a Latin American plant, has been marketed for years as a food and beverage additive as well as a stand-alone sweetener in outside countries, including Brazil, South Korea and Japan. It was introduced to the U.S. in the 80s, but the FDA limited it to a dietary supplement in 1995. Now the FDA is making moves to permit its use in food and beverages.

Naturally, both Coca-Cola and PepsiCo have jumped on the opportunity to use a sweetener with natural origins and zero calories in their products and are currently in talks with the FDA. So far, Wisdom Natural Brands’ SweetLeaf stevia sweetener is leading the stevia brand, according to a new Packaged Facts study, and is currently the only stevia product with the FDA’s Generally Recognized as Safe (GRAS) label, which assures consumers that competent scientific research has found the product to be safe.

Coke and Cargill have teamed up to sell their own version of stevia, called Truvia, as a tabletop sweetener, and the Wall Street Journal has reported that Coke may introduce a new beverage containing Truvia within the next few months. PepsiCo has followed similar steps and joined forces with Whole Earth Sweetener Company to create a stevia-based tabletop sweetener called PureVia. Both Coke/Cargill and PepsiCo/Whole Earth Sweetener Company have filed requests for a GRAS label in May with the FDA, which has 180 days to respond.

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