Nestle CEO sees food prices stabilising - report

ZURICH, April 22 (Reuters) - Global food prices should stabilise, Nestle's NESN.VX new chief executive said in an interview published on Tuesday.

“Several irrational or exceptional factors are influencing the current market. I’m thinking particularly of droughts, speculative funds which are looking for good returns and the keen interest in biofuels,” Paul Bulcke told Swiss newspaper Le Temps.

“Sooner or later the funds will realise their profit and the pressure will decrease. The biofuels debate will become more balanced,” said Bulcke, who took over as CEO of the world’s largest food group from Peter Brabeck this month.

“Certain structural factors, like demand from emerging countries, will remain, but the situation will normalise. The price of milk is already in the process of decreasing,” Bulcke said.

On Monday, when Nestle released first quarter results, the company said that the pace of gains in pricing and volumes are expected to decline later in 2008 as commodity prices relent from their steady rise. [nL20366815] (Reporting by Sam Cage; Editing by Louise Ireland)