- Associated Press - Thursday, February 14, 2019

GENEVA (AP) - Nestle says net profit rose more than 40 percent last year, pointing to revived growth in its key Chinese and U.S. markets and laying out plans to slice off its Herta cold cuts businesses to focus more on plant-based foods and “high-growth” categories.

The Vevey, Switzerland-based food and drinks giant said net income rose to 10.14 billion Swiss francs ($10 billion), from 7.16 billion, citing in part disposals of businesses. Last year Nestle sold its U.S. confectionary business and Gerber Life Insurance unit.

Sales rose 2.1 percent to 91.4 billion francs.

Nestle announced a “strategic review” for Herta charcuterie in six European countries, including a possible sale, as part of efforts to focus on its Garden Gourmet and Sweet Earth brands.

The pet care and coffee units showed sustained growth.

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