Tony Smith, 47, sales director of Van den Bergh Foods, has been appointed sales director of Unilever Bestfoods UK, the new company set up to integrate the VdB and Bestfoods operations. Smith, who has 20 years' experience at Unilever covering the retail, wholesale and out of home markets, said: "Unilever Bestfoods has the potential to become one of the most powerful forces in the UK food industry." The integration of the two operations, which will incorporate Caterplan, the UK's largest foodservice supplier, is well under way and expected to be completed during 2001. VdB chairman Gavin Neath becomes chairman of the new company. Smith added: "Our immediate objective between now and Christmas is to focus our energies on servicing our customers' needs during their busiest time of the year. A good end of year performance from both businesses will provide the platform for introducing the new business." {{NEWS }}