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Open doors in the new EU

Press Release   •   May 06, 2004 18:04 CEST

On Monday this week, the two first lorries loaded with cheese from Arla Foods’ dairy in Poland headed for Finland.

On the first working day after the EU enlargement, the two lorries carrying 40 tons Edam cheese produced at the dairy in Poland were able to cross the Polish border unhindered. Prior to May 1, the queues of waiting lorries could be up to 30 km long, leading to extensive delays, but now the lack of customs formalities means much faster border-crossings.

Arla Foods’ Polish production provides the Group with new opportunities,” explains Executive Director Torben Olsen from the Europe Division.

”Our retail customers are looking towards using fewer suppliers and the fact that we can offer cheese at the low end of the price scale will make us a more attractive partner, ” said Torben Olsen. “The lower end of the market is huge and, up to now, we’ve not been very active in this segment. Our intention is to take a greater share of it.”

Although the EU enlargement provides immediate opportunities for the older member countries, the real potential will only materialise in the longer-term,” Torben Olsen believes.

”As consumers in the former East European nations haven’t become wealthier overnight, not much will change in the short term.” he said. ”The benefits however, will show further down the road. Moreover, the fact that the retail chains which we service will be active in these markets is bound to make things easier for us.”