Looking ahead to 2006 I think the challenge will be the same as the last couple of years, which is that suppliers will be driven by the retailers.
It’s all about cost reduction, but at the same time retailers are looking for innovation.
Sometimes these two things are very difficult to marry up. We are trying to provide products that allow people to innovate, but at the same time take costs out of their business. And the snowball of healthy eating is rolling down the hill – it will get faster and faster.
With regards to the effects of the sugar regime reform this year, British Sugar is the most efficient sugar producer in Europe. There will be some rationalisation of sugar producers across Europe and a lot of companies will stop making sugar altogether.
We are well positioned, and have invested constantly in the business to make sure we have a viable industry going forward, which will hopefully benefit bakers.
It’s always going to be tough in the environment we find ourselves in. But it’s exciting, dynamic and enjoyable at the same time.
The year ahead will be hard work. But if you’re good at your job, you will survive and prosper.