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Like its consumer products peers, Unilever has been enjoying a pandemic-related boom as customers worldwide have snapped up its food items, like Knorr instant soups, and cleaning supply brands such as Domestos bleach. The company’s sales in the first quarter rose 5.7%, building on its strong 2020 momentum. But Unilever, whose growth has lagged that of rivals like Procter & Gamble, is looking to de-emphasize slow-growth categories like tea and some products like Q-tips, while making bigger bets on faster-growing areas like plant-based foods, beauty, and nutritional supplements so it can sustain its current growth long after the pandemic has eased.
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