Jim Carper's Dairy Case

February 17, 2012
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Jim Carper's Dairy Case blog at www.dairyfoods.comWelcome to Jim Carper's Dairy Case, a look at the dairy processors and the products making news this week.

DAIRY PROCESSORS

Arla Foods broke ground on £150 million fresh milk dairy in Aylesbury, England. Once completed, the dairy will process and pack up to one billion liters of milk annually. The plant will create 700 new jobs and up to 1,000 construction jobs over the next 18 months.

Dean Foods Co. announced a loss of $0.05 per diluted share in the fourth quarter 2011, compared to a fourth quarter 2010 loss of $0.11 per diluted share. Dean reported a loss of $8.59 per share for the full year 2011, as compared to earnings of $0.50 per diluted share for 2010.

Saputo Inc. reported net earnings for the third quarter (ended Dec. 31, 2011) increased Cdn $17.7 million or 15.8% compared to $112.1 million for the same quarter last fiscal year. Revenues for the quarter were Cdn$1.796 billion, an increase of 17.1%

DCI Cheese Co., a unit of Saputo, donated $50,000 to Action for Healthy Kids in support of the organization’s efforts to improve nutrition in America’s schools. This donation represents a 25¢ contribution for every piece of Black Diamond purchased from Nov. 1 to Dec. 31, 2011.

DAIRY FOODS

Green Valley Organics, Sebastopol, Calif., launched two all-natural, probiotic-packed lactose free products: Peach Yogurt made with juicy, organic peaches and Strawberry Pomegranate Acai Kefir, a smooth, creamy blend made with organic, antioxidant-rich fruits.

Walmart is carrying Tater Toppers from Santa Barbara Bay (Future Food Brands Ltd.), Dallas. Tater Toppers are intended as a potato topping. Loaded Potato is a blend of sour cream, cheddar cheese, bacon and chives. Chili Cheese Fries is made with sour cream, cheddar cheese, cayenne pepper and a chili spice blend. Butter and Herb is made with dairy sour cream, butter flavor, chives and savory spices. The average retail price is $2.99 for a 9-ounce container.

Wallaby Yogurt Co., a family-owned producer of organic yogurt, from Napa Valley, Calif., launched a line of organic Greek yogurts. It already produces creamy Australian-style yogurts. A wallaby is the name given to any marsupial smaller than a kangaroo or wallaroo.

Alouette Cheese (Bongrain S.A) has a new line of spreadable cheddar cheeses in sharp and bacon flavors sold in ready-to-serve 6-ounce containers. The products are made with 12-month aged cheddar and are Kosher-certified (OUD) and gluten-free.

Karoun Dairies has a Greek-style yogurt made from rBST growth-hormone-free milk and sweetened with honey.

DAIRY MARKETING

Kraft Foods used the Valentine’s Day holiday to promote its new Philadelphia Indulgence cream cheese spreads. The tongue-in-cheek approach had the marketer apologizing in a full-page, four-color ad in USA Today for the lack of the food on a day renowned for chocolate treats. "This blend of real chocolate and rich Philadelphia Cream Cheese Spread pairs so well with strawberries and other Valentine delights that we're anticipating high demand," said Richard Bode, brand manager. The product will be widely available in mid-March.

The U.S. Olympic Committee today named Chobani as the official packaged yogurt provider to the USOC and Team USA. The agreement, which runs through 2014, represents a new sponsor and category addition for the USOC. Chobani products – including Chobani Champions, a Greek yogurt for children – will carry the Team USA and Olympic rings logo. The yogurts will be made available to every athlete living or training at official U.S. Olympic Training Centers in Colorado Springs, Chula Vista, Calif., and Lake Placid, N.Y.

Dippin dots logoDippin' Dots franchisee Brad Maslan opened a store on the second floor of FAO Schwarz, New York City’s iconic toy store. He offers a half-dozen flavors, including Cookies 'n Cream, Cotton Candy and Chocolate Chip Cookie Dough. Maslan also provides Dippin' Dots for a variety of catered events throughout the New York tri-state area, including bar/bat mitzvahs, sweet 16's, weddings, birthday parties, school events and fundraisers.

The Dairy Queen system, part of Berkshire Hathaway, opened its 500th location in China and has plans to open more than 100 new restaurants there by the end of 2012. The 500th restaurant is located in the Hu Dong finance district in Shanghai. It is operated by Shanghai Shida Catering Management Company, which has more than 350 Dairy Queen locations throughout southern and eastern China.

U.S. dairy suppliers capitalized on strong global markets to achieve record export sales in 2011, boosting shipments in a year when milk supplies from competing regions increased dramatically, reports the U.S. Dairy Export Council. Processors and traders moved 3.24 billion lbs. of total milk solids into export channels last year, seven percent more than 2010, and 49 percent more than 2009. Overseas shipments were valued at $4.82 billion, up 30 percent from the year before, according to government trade data released last week.With these gains, a growing and significant proportion of the U.S. milk supply is now sold overseas, notes USDEC. Exports were equivalent to 13.3 percent of U.S. milk solids production, up from 12.8 percent in 2010 and 9.3 percent in 2009. The ratio of milk powder, whey proteins, lactose and cheese sold offshore was the highest ever, a sign of how important exports have become to the U.S. dairy industry.

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