News briefs: Parmalat, Fonterra and Smucker's

By Neil Merrett

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags: Milk, Parmalat

In this week's round up, Fonterra appoints its latest remuneration
committee, Parmalat keeps gunning for Citibank, and Smucker's makes
Canadian acquisition.

Fonterra reveals committee changes ​Fonterra has announced the re-appointment of Henry van der Heyden and Malcolm Bailey as directors of the company's renumaration board. The announcement, which Follows on from the companies 2007 directors' and directors remuneration committee elections, will also see an additional director taking up the position. Ian Farrely, who has worked in the rural banking sector for 21 years, will take up the additional post. Ron Ferriman and Gerard Wolvers were also welcomed to the committee. The committee's job is to ensure that contracts, salaries and other benefits awarded to its Senior executives and Chairman is proportionate to Fonterra's overall performance. Smucker a sucker for Canadian dried milk ​Food group Smucker's has announced this week that it has acquired Canada's Carnation canned milk brand from Nestle. Throguh its Canadian subsidiary, Smucker Foods of Canada, the group will now claim all of Carnation's brands in the country. These brands include thick cream, and skim milk powder, as well as the group's core evaporated milk line. As a condition of the sale, Smucker's will also obtain the brand's production plant in Sherbrooke, Quebec, along with its 29 employees. Group chairman Tim Smucker said the purchase was another coup for the group, as it attemtps to expand operation in North America. "The addition of the Carnation milk brand, with its long history and leading position, is an excellent fit with our strategy of owning and marketing leading North American food brands,"​ he stated. Parmalat's legal pursuits continue ​Parmalat's continued pursuit of companies that it alleges have some responsibility for its financial collapse has received a boost, after the Superior Court of New Jersey yesterday refused to dismiss an action against Citibank, the company says. The Italian dairy giant's fall created one of Europe's largest financial scandals when the company, under a previous administration, defaulted on more than €14bn in debt. ​Under the current leadership of administrator Enrico Bondi, Parmalat has subsequently worked to stave off efforts by an Italian banking conglomerate to disintegrate the group. This has led to the company pursuing various legal proceedings in Europe and the US against banks allegedly involved in having knowledge of the fraud. Just last week, the company settled disputes with Graubuendner Kantonalbank and Credit Agricole Indosuez out of court for the sum of €20.7m and €2.63m respectively. Parmalat posted financial assets totalling €58.9m during the first financial half of this year as a result of these proceedings. In its 2006 full year results, the company reported net debts of €170m. Net gains of €237m from legal settlements with financial institutions allegedly linked to its bankruptcy were highlighted as the key factor in this turnaround.

Related topics: Markets, Fonterra

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