Sales sour for cultured dairy foods
Dairy processors make gains on average prices, but unit sales of yogurt, cottage cheese and sour cream all fall in the latest 52 weeks.
While unit sales decreased 3% in the yogurt category, dollar sales were up almost 9% to $4.7 billion and the average price per unit increased 13 cents, for the 52 weeks ended March 18. According to Chicago-based SymphonyIRI Group, No. 3 Agro Farma Inc., New Berlin, N.Y., the maker of Chobani Greek yogurt, posted the largest gains. Dollar sales were up 128% to $704 million and unit sales rose 132%.
Both No. 8 Hain Celestial Group and No. 6 Fage USA Dairy Industry saw significant double-digit increases. Melville, N.Y.-based Hain Celestial had a 58% increase in dollar sales and a 39% increase in unit sales. Dollar sales for Johnstown, N.Y.-based Fage rose 34% and unit sales were up 50%.
The top two brands (accounting for almost half of the dollar sales for the entire category) didn’t fare as well. Dollar sales slipped 8% for No. 1 Yoplait to $1.3 billion and unit sales were down 20%. Yoplait is owned by Minneapolis-based General Mills. No. 2 Dannon, White Plains, N.Y., had a 0.7% increase in dollar sales to $1.2 billion, unit sales were down 8%.
Unit sales slipped 4% in the cottage cheese category but dollar sales were up 2% to $867 million. The average price per unit increased 17 cents. No. 4 Daisy Brand, Dallas, posted strong gains: dollar sales were up 41% to $36 million; unit sales increased 38%. Private-label brands, the No. 1 spot, had a dollar sales increase of 6% to $357 million but unit sales slipped 3%. No. 5 Friendship, N.Y.-based Friendship Dairies (a Dean Foods unit) saw the largest decrease: down 12% in dollar sales and 21% in unit sales.
The average price per unit for sour cream also increased by 17 cents. Overall, the category was up in dollar sales (8% to $840 million) but down 2% in unit sales. The top two spots—Daisy Brand and private label—both had double-digit dollar sales increases. Daisy was up 12% to $284 million while private label brands were up 14% to $268 million.