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Pepsi Bottling Ventures names new president, CEO

BY Allison Cerra

RALEIGH, N.C. — A joint venture between Suntory International and PepsiCo has appointed a new leader.

Paul Finney has been appointed president and CEO of Pepsi Bottling Ventures, who has served as SVP sales and marketing at the company since 2006. Finney replaces Keith Reimer, who retired on Dec. 31.

"Paul is an immensely talented and versatile executive with proven know-how in running a large sales organization, motivating people and exceeding customer expectations," said Tsuyoshi Nishizaki, president and CEO of Suntory International. "In addition to his knowledge of PepsiCo’s bottling system and the diverse retail channels it serves, we are truly fortunate to have an executive of Paul’s vast skills and experience taking the reins and steering PBV’s strategic direction. While thanking Keith Reimer for his great contributions over the years, we anticipate a seamless leadership transition from Keith to Paul and we look forward to continued momentum in the marketplace."

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Ralcorp Holdings announces board of directors for Ralcorp, Post

BY Allison Cerra

ST. LOUIS — The boards of directors for Ralcorp Holdings’ Ralcorp and Post divisions were unveiled Friday by the company.

As previously reported, Ralcorp said its Post cereal business will be spun off to become its own entity.

J. Patrick Mulcahy will lead Ralcorp Holdings’ board as chairman. The board also will include Benjamin Ola. Akande, Bill Armstrong, Jonathan Baum, Barry Beracha, Kevin Hunt, David Kemper, Patrick Moore and David Wenzel. Meanwhile, William Stiritz, Ralcorp’s current board chairman, will serve as board chairman for Post. Additional members include David Banks, Terence Block, Jay Brown, Edwin Callison, Gregory Curl, William Danforth, Robert Grote and David Skarie.

"We are very excited to have such an experienced and talented group of individuals to lead Ralcorp and Post as each company moves forward independently," Stiritz said. "These directors have proven track records of success, and we are confident that their leadership and expertise, along with the commitment and passion they share for the businesses, will result in significant value for our shareholders."

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Dove Dark Chocolate, chef Claire Robinson look to help consumers keep New Year’s resolutions

BY Allison Cerra

HACKETTSTOWN, N.J. — In an effort to help consumers keep their New Year’s resolutions, Mars Chocolate North America said its Dove Dark Chocolate brand has partnered with celebrity chef Claire Robinson.

Through the partnership, Dove Dark Chocolate and Robinson will provide five tips to help people make healthy changes without compromising taste. Additionally, Robinson also will share her “top five” finds for 2012 and a series of custom recipes featuring Dove Dark Chocolate on the brand’s Facebook page.

“Many people resolve each year to give up something they love, but that isn’t actually necessary in many cases,” Mars Chocolate North America chief consumer officer Debra Sandler said. “We are thrilled to be working with Claire Robinson to kick off the New Year with resolutions that people will be able to keep year-round without having to sacrifice things like the silky smooth taste of Dove Dark Chocolate.”

In related news, Mars announced that Dove Dark Chocolate has become the first mainstream chocolate brand to bear the Rainforest Alliance Certified seal on its dark chocolate products, which reinforces the company’s long-time commitment to cocoa sustainability. Rainforest Alliance Certified farms meet standards for sustainable agriculture that protect ecosystems and wildlife, conserve water, reduce agrochemicals and ensure the rights and well-being of workers, their families and communities, according to the company.

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