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How snacking giant Mondelez plans to make the Oreo the 'world's cookie'

Julia La Roche
·Correspondent

Snacking giant Mondelez (MDLZ) wants to make the Oreo "the world's cookie" as the creme-filled chocolate snack continues to grow outside of its two most important markets.

First appearing in March 1912, the Oreo is now the world's best-selling cookie, hitting $2 billion in global annual sales in 2016 and sold in more than 100 countries.

It's also the best-selling biscuit in China, where consumers can find unique regional flavors like wasabi and spicy chicken when they twist and pull the chocolate-flavored wafers apart. Yet the snack maker has its sights set far beyond the Middle Kingdom.

"Then, there's the rest of the world," CEO Dirk Van de Put told Yahoo Finance.

"That's why I'm saying that there is this potential. If we could make it happen in China, and we see a number of other countries where Oreo is really growing fast, that is really giving us the opportunity to make Oreo the world's cookie,” he added.

Collectively, the U.S. and China account for 70% of Oreo's business, but there's still a growing opportunity as it enters other countries. With all that said, Oreo hasn’t forgotten its core consumer: U.S. citizens.

"Americans have a love relationship with Oreos. It's part of growing up. It's the most beloved food brand not only for Millennials but also for Generation Z," Van de Put said.

"They like the flavor aspect of it. It doesn't remind them yet of growing up and having Oreos when they come from school like American kids,” the CEO added.

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Julia La Roche is a finance reporter at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on
Twitter.