Nestlé and French-based Lactalis have announced that they plan to establish a common business in the chilled dairy sector in Europe.

The groups said that the proposed venture, which would cover the EU countries, Switzerland and Norway, would cover a wide range of chilled dairy products such as yoghurts and desserts.

Peter Brabeck-Letmathe, chairman and chief executive officer of Nestlé said: “This venture with a respected and successful French company will create a strong, European champion in the yoghurt and chilled dessert markets, allowing us to compete profitably in a category of strategic importance for Nestlé.”