Arla Foods amba has today announced its Group 2017 results with the UK, its largest market, growing retail and foodservice revenue to £1.94 billion, up from £1.79 billion in 2016.
This growth, along with the company’s recent £72 million investment in the UK business shows Arla’s commitment to continue to further build the UK dairy industry.
It also signals the strength of Arla’s farmer-owned cooperative model as growth is driven while balancing the challenges facing the dairy industry such as volatility in the global milk market, a weak British pound and Brexit uncertainties.
Tomas Pietrangeli, Managing Director, Arla Foods UK, comments: “Arla was both the fastest growing FMCG brand in the UK and the only leading dairy company delivering branded growth. We also saw significant wins in both foodservice and own label offering in 2017 such as the Morrisons’ fresh milk tender win. I believe that we are in a strong position to deliver on our 2020 Good Growth strategy.”
“Our commitment to our ambitious plans are certainly driving financial returns and we will be focused on this again during this year. Making innovative and inherently natural dairy products, produced responsibly and sustainably, enables us to continue to deliver in an ever-increasing consumer driven grocery market.”
Arla’s brands delivering the greatest revenue growth in 2017 included Lurpak growing by 9%, Anchor by 16% and the Arla brand growing by 18%.
Within the Arla brand range, Arla Skyr (+45%), Arla Protein (+69%) and Arla B.O.B. (+45%) have driven growth by creating genuine product innovation, launching products which meet new lifestyle and nutritional demands.
For Arla Protein, 2017 saw a focus on providing products which appealed to consumers in a performance mindset such as the Arla Protein Pouch and new yogurt flavours such as mango, kale and lime.
Investment and expansion of Arla’s sales channels is also driving growth in the UK. This carried through into its foodservice division which rebranded as Arla Pro during 2017 helping drive revenue growth at 22% versus last year.
The co-branding of Arla Organic into McDonald’s has contributed to a high growth rate on branded volumes and includes the relaunch of the 250mls Happy Meal milk.
As the UK’s number one butter brand Lurpak’s popularity in foodservice is also increasing having seen revenue grow by 25% in 2017.
Pietrangeli added: “General health and food quality continues to grow in importance to the British public whether eating at home or out and about. The natural simplicity of our product ingredients, their ease of use for chefs and our farmer owned status is resonating with operators, particularly with quick service restaurants, coffee shops, pizza chains and pubs.”