Milling & Baking News - May 11, 2004 - (Page 1)

presents IAOM SHOWGUIDE 2 004 Theinewsweeklyiofigrain-basedifoods MAY 11, 2004 / N E W S F E AT U R E Cargill Sweeteners: After heady growth, major transformation S uccess as an ingredient supplier today requires a close alignment of interests with customers, John E. Geisler, corporate vice-president of Cargill, Inc., Wayzata, Minn., said recently in describing how Cargill has transformed itself in adhering to this idea. While this prescription may sound benign, its pursuit has prompted an unprecedented shift in the way Cargill does business, Mr. Geisler stated. In addition to a major initiative aimed at increasing the effectiveness of its 100,000-person workforce, the company has pressed to find new ways of meeting customer needs. This shift has included exploring approaches that do not automatically mean owning production capacity for all the ingredients it supplies. The different approaches Cargill now is willing to take are well illustrated in its sweetener business. "This is not your father's sweetener business," said Patrick E. Bowe, president of Cargill Sweeteners North America. "There was a time when the most important thing was to deliver on-time and in-spec. It was the customer's job to integrate the ingredient into their food products. Product reliability is still critical, but today more and more customers are looking to us to help them develop product innovations." The sweetener business was built through a mix of acquisitions, partnerships, alliances and new plant construction. The company's first plant, in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, was acquired in 1967. Since then it has grown to nine U.S. plants, eight owned by Cargill and one leased from a farmer-owned cooperative. The Cerestar acquisition in 2002 is the most recent dramatic step taken by Cargill to grow and reshape its sweetener business. Indeed, the $1.1-billion transaction was the largest acquisition of any kind by the corporation. It has solidified Cargill's position as the world's largest corn wet miller by coupling Cerestar's prominence in Western Europe with Cargill's presence in Eastern Europe, Turkey, China and Brazil, in addition to the United States. Mr. Bowe said it was much more than Cerestar's physical assets that made the acquisition attractive to Cargill. "The appeal was around their technology and product Continued on Page 19 Wirthlin and Mullen convene to finalize public relations proposal RESTON, VA. - Two agencies that have been working intensively on different aspects of a grain-based foods product promotion program came together last week to finalize details of the plan. For the past several months, WirthlinWorldwide Research, Reston, has been conducting thorough research into consumer attitudes toward grain-based foods. The group's preliminary findings have been presented before industry groups. More recently, Mullen, a Wenham, Mass.- based public relations firm has begun to draft creative ideas for a p.r. campaign. Top representatives of the organizations met May 6 at Wirthlin headquarters in Reston. The meeting will be followed on June 9 by a formal program proposal by Wirthlin and Mullen to representatives of the American Bakers Association and the North American Millers' Association at a meeting in Washington. Both NAMA and the A.B.A. have Continued on Page 9 inside MGPI sees earnings as much as 35% higher than earlier guidance ATCHISON, KAS. - With one quarter remaining in fiscal 2004, MGP Ingredients has sharply raised its earnings guidance for the year. The specialty ingredients manufacturer also announced surging profits and sales in the third quarter. MGPI revised its earnings guidance for the fiscal year ending June 30 to $1.30 to $1.35 per share, up from the previously announced range of $1 to $1.10. At the Continued on Page 14 THIS WEEK Two K.C. terminal elevators to Bartlett 12 Ingredient Quarterly profits surge at Canada Bread 17 Three promoted to senior v.p. at ADM 27 Week 30

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Milling & Baking News - May 11, 2004