Woolworths responds to reports on Goodman Fielder bread strategy

Posted by AFN Staff Writers on 22nd November 2011

Woolworths Supermarkets has warned Australian bread manufacturing giant, Goodman Fielder, that any changes made to the shelf-life of its bread will be “taken seriously” by the supermarket chain.

Woolworths statement came in response to reports this week that Goodman Fielder is considering extending the shelf-life of its bread using food technology to save money through a lower frequency of deliveries.

Woolworths spokesperson Benedict Brook told Australian Food News, “Woolworths are the ‘fresh food’ people and we take this responsibility seriously. Moves by any of our suppliers that changes the freshness of a product like bread would need to be fully discussed with us. Ultimately it will be the customer who decides what goes on our shelves.”

The reports came after Goodman Fielder’s new CEO Chris Delaney told investors last week that the company could learn from the way Europe and America manages bread supply, which typically involves delivering bread with a longer shelf-life than in Australia.

Goodman Fielder’s Director of Corporate Affairs Ian Greenshields told Australian Food News today that these reports had been blown out of proportion. He said, “All that Chris Delaney said was that there are other ways to manage the supply of bread in Australia. Yet, if you look at some of the reports it looks as though we’re planning on supplying stale bread to Australia. Of course, this couldn’t be further from the truth.”