Cadbury Schweppes has reported strong growth in its confectionary sales for the first quarter of 2008, with sales up 7 per cent.

The company said that sales in chewing gum were especially strong and that price increases meant it was able to offset the rising price of commodities.

Cadbury did however say that their market share of the Easter egg market this year fell thanks to price cuts by rival brands.

The company is expected to confirm a demerger of its North American drinks unit Americas Beverages on Friday. Cadbury said that Americas Beverages had seen a 3 per cent growth in revenues in the first quarter.

Todd Stitzer, CEO of Cadbury Schweppes, said, We have had a strong start to the year in confectionery with revenues in the first quarter driven by excellent performances from our gum and emerging market businesses and higher pricing to recover increased commodity costs. Americas Beverages is performing in line with expectations with revenues benefiting from good growth in our core non-carbonate brands.

While the economic outlook in 2008 is challenging, we are encouraged by the performances of our confectionery and Americas Beverages businesses and the continued progress being made on their separate strategic agendas. We confirm the previous guidance given for both businesses and remain confident that they will generate enhanced returns for our shareowners as independent focused Groups.