German juice group Eckes-Granini has denied that it is planning to buy Nidan Soki, one of the four largest juice producers in Russia.

Analysts in Russia have hinted that Eckes-Granini could be looking to buy Nidan Soki after the two companies signed a deal to locally package the German firm's juices.

Sidney Coffeng, vice president for marketing, R&D and exports at Eckes-Granini, told just-drinks today (20 September) that the company has no plans to buy Nidan Soki.

He said: "Russia's a huge market. A lot of the big players, like Coca-Cola, are in there and have bought a few local companies but we are just interested in growing our own business."

Coffeng, however, refused to comment on whether Eckes-Granini would look to make future acquisitions in Russia.

The deal with Nidan Soki will see the Russian firm package Eckes-Granini brands, including Granini and Uslada, at its plant in the Moscow region. Eckes-Granini already produces its juices at its own plant Marli Sok in St. Petersburg.

Coffeng added: "It's a fast-growing market and we would like to expand further."