Disney extends branded fruit initiative in the UK

LONDON - Disney has signed a deal to license the branding of fresh fruit in Tesco supermarkets in the UK and across Europe.

The entertainment company has a 10-year contract with fast food chain McDonald's that expires at the end of the year.

The restaurant chain has recently come under fire in the childhood obesity debate, and it is believed that Disney now wants to associate itself with healthier products.

Andy Mooney, chairman of Disney Consumer Products, said: "We are trying to develop 'better for you' food ranges for kids."

Shoppers can already buy Disney-branded satsumas in Tesco stores. Each fruit has a Winnie the Pooh sticker attached, which children can collect in a sticker book.

Disney-branded bananas and apples are also planned. Branded mini apricots and mixed raisins are already available.

In France, Disney licences baby tomatoes, available in Champion stores and mini bananas in Germany's Metro stores.

Disney has launched around 300 food products in Europe this year including pizzas, pasta and beef burgers in the shape of Mickey Mouse, sold in France and Germany.

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