Arla Foods UK has embarked on a major new communications and rebranding drive to increase consumer awareness of the brand behind household brands such as Anchor, Lurpak and Cravendale.

Consumers “do not know Arla today”, admitted Arla Foods CEO Peter Lauritzen as he unveiled details of the campaign to promote the Scandinavian giant’s UK portfolio.

The intention was to boost awareness to 60% within five years up from virtually zero, he said, ­citing a similar move by Unilever, which has added a ‘U’ to its products.

“You’ll see more Arla ­endorsement, a little bit like Unilever do but a little bit more and this will be ­incorporated in our existing brands,” he said.

The Arla logo is being displayed during the end frame of the new TV adverts for Cravendale, which launched last week, and will appear on ads for Anchor, which air from 6 September, and on Lactofree ads from 1 November.

Press ads that will show products from its portfolio are planned for January and Arla will support the campaign by gradually giving its logo more prominence on packs. At the moment, only Apetina and Lactofree carry the logo on the front of the pack, and it is ­displayed on the side of Cravendale bottles. The logo will be moved from the side of Cravendale ­bottles to the front in 2011 and Arla plans to introduce it on to the top of Anchor packs in 2012.

Arla had no plans to add the logo to packs of Lurpak or Castello but it did intend to introduce new products with overt Arla branding, said Lauritzen.

It would also ramp up the amount of consumer activity, probably focusing on Arla Food amba’s ‘Closer to Nature’ slogan. “We want to be the dairy company close to nature, that means we want to ­supply natural products to our customers,” he said.

This week, the Arla amba subsidiary posted interim results showing an £81.2m profit on a turnover of £2.77bn for the first half of 2010.

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