International dairy company Arla Foods is planning to further strengthen its innovation and global product agenda in order to enhance its competitive advantage within key categories.

The company’s new approach includes the creation of a product and innovation organisation.

Arla Foods executive vice-president and CMO Hanne Søndergaard said: “The new set up will enable closer collaboration with our commercial zones, markets and supply chain, ensuring that we are driving our global innovation and product agendas from the strongest possible position to maximise the value of our products.

“With the aim for half of our growth to come from innovation, it’s a key element of our strategy and an essential element in our mission to create the highest possible value for the milk supplied by our cooperative owners.”

“The new set up will enable closer collaboration with our commercial zones, markets and supply chain, ensuring that we are driving our global innovation and product agendas.”

Additionally, the company has appointed Lars Dalsgaard as senior vice president for its product and innovation organisation.

Dalsgaard will take charge of the organisation from 1 April 2019.

Søndergaard further explained that integrating the company’s existing product management, research and development functions would better leverage Arla’s technologies and competencies, as well as develop its competitive strengths.

The organisation will be responsible for all product-related activities, including research and technology development, product development, and management of all product and packaging changes.

Søndergaard added: “Lars has the perfect combination of skills, expertise and experience within the business and is passionate about taking both our innovation and product agendas to the next level.”

Last September, Arla Foods unveiled plans to build an innovation centre in Nr Vium, Denmark, with a focus on whey.

Built with an investment of €36.3m, the innovation centre will be part of Arla Foods Ingredients (AFI).

Scientists and innovators will be engaged in discovering and delivering new ways of using milk and whey to serve the needs of the world’s growing population.

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