Upbeat food and drink giant Nestle on track to meet organic growth targets

Nestle factory in Halifax
Nestle factory in Halifax

Nestle posted higher than expected sales growth in the first three months of the year, putting it on track to meet its goal of more than 3 per cent organic growth this year.

Nestle employs around 1,800 people in York, where it makes five million KitKat bars a day, and around 500 in Halifax, where it makes its famous Quality Street and After Eight chocolates.

The world’s biggest food group said its biggest markets, the US and China, put in a good performance in the quarter, with the largest contributions from pet care, dairy and infant nutrition.

Nestle and its peers are trying to buck a consumer trend towards fresh, locally produced foods, which has hit sales of packaged goods, by focusing on fast-growing categories like infant formula and coffee.

The company said organic or self-generated sales growth accelerated to 3.4 per cent in the first quarter.

Chief executive Mark Schneider said: “Our increased speed, innovation for a changing world and execution focus are clearly paying off.

“We confirm our outlook for the year.”

Nestle also said that its efforts to gear its portfolio more towards health and wellness, and fix or dispose of underperforming brands, are on track.