Premier Foods' new general manager of its desserts business unit, Simon King, has set out plans for its portfolio of iconic brands.

King has been recruited from Northern Foods to invest in the company's desserts brands, which include Ambrosia, Hartley's, Bird's and Angel Delight.

"I want to look at what our brands can do and where we can take them in the future," said King.

"We've got some brands that are very well known with great heritage such as Ambrosia. The challenge is keeping up with consumers' needs without turning our back on the history of brands."

With Hartley's, Premier has demonstrated growth by putting the products into individual ready-to-serve pots - an area King said there needed to be more focus on. He added that Premier Foods was looking at new marketing strategies, but would not give details.

"We need to make our aisle more exciting and more regularly visited by shoppers, increase investment and bring innovation to the market," he said.

"Premier has a good track record of building ideas quickly and investing in innovation. We have the resources to make those commitments. We're exploring approaches that can be exposed across all communication channels."

Prior to joining Premier, King was marketing director for Northern Foods' chilled division for one year and worked as marketing controller, innnovation at Kellogg for five years.

"My time at Northern Foods showed me how to work in a largely own-label business and helped me understand the role branded and own-label play in achieving growth," he said.

Howard Beveridge, Premier's commercial director said: "I look forward to working with Simon to build our market-leading portfolio of Great British desserts brands."