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Breakthrough for Arla in the Middle East

Press Release   •   Apr 06, 2006 12:23 CEST

Butter and cheese from Arla Foods are back in 3,000 shops and supermarkets in the Middle East. At the same time, 31 of Arla’s largest retail customers in Saudi Arabia have confirmed that they will return Arla products to their shelves on Saturday.

“We’re delighted that our largest Saudi customers have decided to lift the boycott,” said Executive Director Finn Hansen from Arla. “We expect the other large supermarkets in the rest of the Middle East to follow.”

Before the boycott began, Arla supplied 50,000 stores and supermarkets in the region.

The reaction from consumers in shops and supermarkets selling Danish dairy products has, so far, been positive.

“However, we’re fully aware that many Arab consumers remain sceptical about our products, so we plan to adjust certain parts of our marketing” said Finn Hansen.”

New Arla initiatives include sponsoring humanitarian projects in the region, i.e. by giving aid to disabled children, cancer sufferers and the hungry. Arla has approached the Danish Red Cross to assist in co-ordinating the effort. Arla also intends to support activities aimed at creating greater understanding between the world’s religions and cultures.

“As a global company, we want to help foster the understanding that civilisations can work together. Otherwise we cannot function as a global business,” Finn Hansen said.