The world's biggest food company Nestle has posted 2012 first quarter sales growth of 7.2 per cent owing to strong demand in emerging markets.
Sales rose by 5.6 per cent to 21.4 billion Swiss francs ($A22.73 billion) between January and March, the owner of brands such as Kit Kat and Haagen Dazs said on Friday.
Chief executive Paul Bulcke said in a statement that 2012 was shaping up to be the "challenging year" the food giant had anticipated.
"In many developed markets where consumer confidence is low, the trading environment is subdued whilst in most emerging markets, conditions remain dynamic and rich in growth opportunities," Mr Bulcke said.
The company confirmed its full-year sales forecast of 5 to 6 per cent growth.