Premier says goodbye to Rowntrees jelly brand

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Premier Foods, the company whose sauce led to the Sudan 1 scare, is to axe the famous Rowntrees jelly brand as part of its strategy of focusing on its groceries portfolio which includes Branston pickle and Ambrosia rice pudding.

Premier Foods, the company whose sauce led to the Sudan 1 scare, is to axe the famous Rowntrees jelly brand as part of its strategy of focusing on its groceries portfolio which includes Branston pickle and Ambrosia rice pudding.

It is also considering the future of its Crosse & Blackwell Worcester sauce brand, which has been found to contain the banned carcinogen Sudan 1 and is used as an ingredient in other foodstuffs.

More than 400 products have been taken off supermarket shelves after being infected, in the biggest product recall in British retailing history. However, the company said yesterday that having assessed claims made against it as a result of the scare, and its insurance position, the Sudan 1 affair would not have a "material" financial impact.

Premier's annual results, announced yesterday, revealed its core grocery business had flat revenues in 2004 caused mainly by disruption to sales after a fire at its Suffolk factory. Grocery sales were flat at £374.8m while tea and beverages, including Typhoo, were down 1.9 per cent to £140.3m.

The company said the Rowntrees jelly brand would be discontinued, with jelly now being made under its Hartley's brand. This was to stop confusion with Rowntrees fruit pastilles, owned by Nestlé.

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