MÃÂ¼ller Dairy UK has snatched the licence for Cadbury’s desserts from food giant Uniq. The deal will reinforce the position of MÃÂ¼ller as the UK’s leading dairy brand in the chilled dessert category.
The move follows the appointment of Andrew Harrison as MÃÂ¼ller’s managing director. Harrison joins the company at the end of this month (MW January 8). The Cadbury deal is expected to be signed by the end of March.
The loss will come as a blow to Uniq, which has reported significant sales losses over the last two years. Sales dropped from £2.3bn in 2001 to £988m last year.
MÃÂ¼ller has confirmed that it will take over commercial responsibilities for Cadbury’s desserts, which include twin-pot mousses and chocolate trifles. Uniq will continue to co-pack the products.
Industry insiders say there is concern over the dominance the deal gives MÃÂ¼ller, which already has 30.2 per cent of the UK market. It recently launched three products with United Biscuits-owned McVitie’s, after the latter scrapped its tie-up with Kellogg (MW January 29).
Observers also note that Uniq has failed to focus on the Cadbury brand. They believe that the move to MÃÂ¼ller will kick-start a renewed interested in new product development for the brands.