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The Roberts Dairy brand will be discontinued in May when the dairy's milk and dairy products will be marketed under the Hiland Dairy Foods label. In a statement, Hiland said "the move will solidify the synergy between two of the country’s finest dairy producers, under one name."
Roberts Dairy has been a division of Prairie Farms - Hiland Dairy since 1981. Prairie Farms, Carlinville, Ill., ranks 9th on the Dairy 100, Dairy Foods' annual list of North America's largest dairy processors. Prairie Farms reported revenues of $2.7 billion in 2011.
Hiland is a farmer-owned company with 11 plants in Arkansas, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska and Oklahoma making milk, ice cream, yogurt, cottage cheese, sour cream and dips, half and half, whipping cream, orange juice, butter and cheese. The company serves customers in Arkansas, Colorado, Iowa, Kansas, Missouri, Nebraska, Oklahoma, Texas and Wyoming.
On the Hiland website, the company states that "The decision was made to operate under one name for the entire eleven-state distribution area. Because the labels and packaging are now ordered in bulk — those savings are passed along to our customers."
No plants will close, nor will workers be laid off, according to information on the website. "Our brand consolidation with Hiland Dairy may allow us to hire more workers in the future. Our name change will not alter any aspect of how we run our business. It will not affect any of the existing staff, plant operations, or facilities."
Another division, Coleman Dairy, began marketing its milk and dairy products under the Hiland Dairy label in January 2013.
In a statement, Gary Aggus, president/general manager of Hiland Dairy, said “This will be a great match of farmer-owned dairies. Blending the Hiland & Roberts Dairy brands is a natural progression that ensures we’ll continue to deliver the same fresh, high quality milk and tasty dairy foods that consumers have enjoyed for generations.”
Roberts products will continue to be produced with no antibiotics and no artificial growth hormones.
“The only thing changing is the label on the package,” says Aggus.
In addition to its dairy line, Hiland also produces fresh orange and apple juice, lemonade and fruit punch. In addition, Hiland Dairy produces and distributes Red Diamond Tea, Health Wise Probiotic Yogurt and YoPhoria Smoothies.