Marjana Davidović, Country Manager Nestlé Adriatic South Hub (Serbia, Montenegro, North Macedonia)

Consumers Trust Nestlé’s Portfolio

Nestlé is a company that grows constantly thanks to its portfolio. In terms of facts and figures, this means that it occupies the number one spot in the categories of instant coffee, with a 66.2% market share, food products, with a 32.8% share, and cereals, with 20.8%

Our global aim is to use electricity solely from renewable sources, while our strategic ambition is to halve emissions of greenhouse gases by 2030 and eliminate them completely by 2050, announces Marjana Davidović, Country Manager Nestlé Adriatic South Hub (Serbia, Montenegro, North Macedonia) in this CorD interview.

You took the helm of the company in November 2020 and achieved excellent results in the first quarter of this year, while you are also preparing to achieve record growth. How would you explain all of that?

The credit for the good results of this year primarily belongs to the dedicated team that worked on the preparing of plans throughout the whole of last year. The next important item is the Nestlé product range, which reflects the changes among consumes that occurred during the pandemic, and we immediately adapted our business strategy to the newly emerging situation. We have updated numerous and launched completely new products such as Starbucks coffee in capsules, for instance. Likewise, new sales channels have also additionally contributed to us growing even more.

The epidemic was a challenge to operations during this period, but owing to timely reactions at several levels – in the supply chain, distribution, and through coordination with our partners – that we managed to ensure continuous production and the delivery of our products to shelves even during the most difficult moments.

An important pillar of our environmental objectives is represented by the transformation of packaging aimed at eliminating plastics

The pandemic compelled us to adapt ourselves. Is adaptation actually the word that marked the period that’s behind us?

Adaptation is actually the key word – not only in extraordinary situations, rather it will also be key in the period ahead. Business operations have changed under the new circumstances, but we succeeded in adapting quickly and overcoming the challenges. We have kept pace, and continue to do so, when it comes to market trends like the digitalisation of operations and modified communication with consumers. For example, we organised a digital eBusiness academy for our employees – which provided excellent training on the basics of digital operations, while being simultaneously adapted to the position and the breadth of knowledge brought by that position. This is just one example of increasing efficiency, particularly under new circumstances when changes occur on an almost daily basis.

Our colleagues very quickly grasped the seriousness of the situation and reacted swiftly, and – most importantly – showed solidarity, which forms an essential part of our corporate culture.

Environmental protection is something else that is currently in the focus of all of us, including your company. Could you tell us more about your environmental objectives?

The Nestlé factory in Surčin is the first plant in Serbia to have stopped depositing waste at landfill sites, or, more precisely, it was the first to achieve the goal of “Zero Waste to Landfill”, which means that not a gram of waste from the factory ends up in landfills.

We also possess a cutting-edge wastewater treatment facility, which purifies and returns as much as 65,000 litres of clean water per day to the Serbian nature. Our global aim is to use electricity solely from renewable sources, while we’ve already achieved that in Serbia through a contract signed with EPS on the purchase of 100% green energy from hydroelectric power plants.

An important pillar of our environmental objectives is represented by the transformation of packaging aimed at eliminating plastics. Smarties represent Nestlé’s first confectionery brand to introduce paper packaging, thanks to which 250 million plastic packages a year will be removed from circulation, and by 2025 the entire Nestlé portfolio will have 100% recyclable packaging. At the local level, we are already 86% of the way to achieving that goal.

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