Jim Carper's Dairy Case blog reviews this week's dairy news headlines, including:
- Dairy processor Grassland plans to double the capacity of its milk plant
- Hamdi Ulukaya, head of yogurt maker Chobani, receives an award
- Coke is going to distribute dairy beverage Core Power, a popular recovery drink for athletes
- The Dairy Council of California promotes the health and nutrition benefits of milk
Butter maker Grassland Dairy Products is doubling milk plant capacity to churn more butter and dairy products. Producing one-third of the world’s butter, Grassland currently processes more than 4.8 million pounds of milk daily to churn out more than 280,000 pounds of butter daily — the equivalent to 70 semi-truck loads of butter a day. With added capacity the plant is now poised to run 8 million pounds of milk through the plant using three ultra-modern continuous churns each producing 50,000 pounds of butter per hour.
"We have a 12-bay intake and can unload 12 trucks of milk at one time and each truck contains about 50,000 pounds of milk,” says Grassland Vice President Trevor Wuethrich. “Before unloading, all milk undergoes rigorous quality tests to ensure meets and exceeds standards. That milk is then stored in 50,000 gallon silos and kept at 44 degrees Fahrenheit until it's used. Once that milk is churned into butter and placed in its proper packaging, it is stored in our 60,000 square foot cold warehouse and ready for semi-trucks to take it all over the country.”
Among the companies most recognized butter brands consumers will find in the dairy aisle bearing the creamery’s name is Grassland, along with other marketed brands, including Fall Creek, Golden Goodness and Country Cream.
In addition to complete milk and cream processing capabilities to produce an array of butter and dairy products, Grassland recently installed two state-of-the-art milk driers allowing the plant to dry 28,000 pounds of powder per hour or 4.7 million pounds weekly. The milk driers allow Grassland to get the most value from patron milk by drying down the milk into a powder used as a food and beverage ingredient.
Plans are also being thought out to install a lactose dryer to make a high quality edible powder for the food industry. The new lactose dryer would create 25 new jobs in the area.
Ernst & Young honored Hamdi Ulukaya , the founder of yogurt brand Chobani, with an Entrepreneur Of The Year award on June 19. He is the winner for the New York area in the Retail and Consumer Products category. An independent judging panel made up of previous winners of the award, CEOs, private-capital investors and other regional business leaders made the selection.
Ulukaya has developed Chobani Greek yogurt into one of the world’s fastest growing consumer brands.
“We started Chobani in 2005 with five people and are now over 1,200 strong. I couldn't have done this without my great team who has helped me build this business one cup at a time and make Chobani America’sNo. 1 yogurt brand,” he said.
Ernst & Young's Entrepreneur Of The Year is considered the world’s most prestigious business award for entrepreneurs. It recognizes those who are building and leading successful, growing and dynamic businesses.
Coca-Cola said this week it will distribute Core Power (originally marketed as Athletes HoneyMilk in Colorado and Texas), a high-protein recovery beverage made with dairy milk and honey. The beverage's ratio of 20% whey and 80% casein is the same ratio that is naturally found in milk.
Core Power is produced and marketed by Fair Oaks Farms Brands, which is owned by 87 American family farmers.
"Our unique cold filtration process which allows us to increase the amounts of protein and calcium is a true innovation in the dairy category," said Steve Jones, CEO at Fair Oaks Farms Brands. "Core Power replenishes strength and builds lean muscle after a workout. It's a perfect recovery drink for everyone from the elite athlete to those just trying to keep fit."
"This new brand is part of an exciting category for consumers and retailers that is still in the early stage of its growth potential," said Deryck van Rensburg, president of Coca-Cola North America Venturing and Emerging Brands.
Core Power will be available in 26-gram and 20-gram protein versions and comes in 11.5-ounce recyclable plastic bottles. It is aseptically packaged so can be distributed in a shelf stable environment until chilled before consumption. Core Power is available in honey, chocolate, vanilla and strawberry flavors.
The Dairy Council of California has produced one of the best summaries about milk that I've seen. Written for consumers, the infographic positions milk and milk products as an irreplaceable food group for maintaining health.
“Milk! Secrets, Stories & Facts of America’s Favorite Natural Beverage" is on the council's website. The council is also placing the information next to dairy cases in select Sacramento-area grocery stores.
The "infographic" tells consumers everything from why milk has such nostalgic appeal and how it reached such a prominent role in our diet, to its many culinary uses and multiple positive effects on health and economic value.
Food group is cheered by EC's ruling on generic names
The European Commission stated that the terms "mozzarella," "brie", "gouda", "edam" and "cheddar" are generic and will not be confiscated solely for the use by certain European producers , reports the Consortium for Common Food Names.
The CCFN called this "a welcome development for producers of these products around the world." The consortium hopes that the EC will also consider these food names generic as well: However, that clarification is just the tip of the iceberg on what CCFN believes is needed from the EC. The CCFN hopes that the EC will extend that reasonable assessment to other generic names as well: havarti, parmesan, prosciutto, provolone and salami.