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General Mills Outlines Global Priorities For Company Growth

General Mills updated investors on its global priorities for fiscal 2018 at the company's annual Investor Day event, which took place earlier this week.

CEO Jeff Harmening said that the company is committed to unlocking growth opportunities, including in the area of e-commerce, which currently represents around 1.5% of the company's total sales in the US. However, General Mills expects this number to grow by 5% by fiscal year 2020.

"We'll remain laser-focused on knowing our consumer and what's driving them," said Harmening.

"While the biggest shift in our industry in the last five years was driven by changing consumer food values, I believe the most significant change that will impact the next five years will be in how consumers get their food, driven by the rapid acceleration of e-commerce. We see this as an exciting opportunity for General Mills."

Growth Priorities

The company aims to grow its cereal business globally, and says that it has seen recent benefits from both wellness and taste improvements in cereal. This includes creating gluten-free products, removing artificial colours and flavours, and adding whole grain.

It also plans to reshape its US yoghurt portfolio through its Yoplait and Go-Gurt brands, and expand its presence in the organic segment with Annie's and Liberté yoghurts.

Additionally, General Mills will be investing in product innovation for brands such as Häagen-Dazs, Nature Valley, Fibre One, and Old El Paso. Earlier this week the company unveiled a selection of new products.

The final area of focus is on natural and organic products in North America. General Mills has been expanding this area since it first acquired the Cascadian Farm and Muir Glen brands in 2000. Now the company has nine such brands in its portfolio, and expects them to generate $1.5 billion in net sales by 2020.

Overall, General Mills says that it will moderate the pace of expansion in fiscal 2018 as it invests to restore topline growth.

© 2017 European Supermarket Magazine – your source for the latest retail news. Article by Sarah Harford. Click subscribe to sign up to ESM: The European Supermarket Magazine.

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