DFA buys Muller-Quaker yogurt plant in New York
A million-dollar bet fails to pay off for PepsiCo and the European Theo Müller Group.
Dairy Farmers of America is buying a yogurt plant in New York state from Müller Quaker, a partnership of German dairy giant Theo Müller Group and Quaker Oats, a unit of PepsiCo, according to published reports.
In “PepsiCo’s million-dollar bet on yogurt” published in the June 2014 Dairy Foods, Muller Quaker Dairy CEO explained why PepsiCo partnered with Müller instead of launching its own Quaker brand.
After looking at many options, he said “it was clear that Theo Müller Group was the best partner for PepsiCo to enter the still-developing U.S. yogurt market. The Theo Müller Group brings innovative, category-leading products and technology to the partnership with PepsiCo. They have best-in-class dairy manufacturing, are the largest privately owned dairy company in Germany with in-house fruit preparation and have unique products and packaging.”
The Müller Group isn’t the first European yogurt maker to see the potential in the United States. France’s Danone (parent of Dannon) has been selling in the United States for years. Alpina, a dairy company based in Colombia, had a similar revelation. (In 2012, it built a plant in the same industrial park in Batavia, N.Y., as MQD.)
In November, DFA announced it was buying out Fonterra’s interest in DairiConcepts, a joint venture between the two dairy cooperatives.