Dairy Management Inc., Rosemont, Ill., said Taco Bell is unveiling its second frozen beverage featuring dairy at all participating U.S. locations, thanks to checkoff support. The Mtn Dew Baja Blast Colada Freeze features a dairy-based creamer made from real heavy cream, with pineapple and coconut flavors to give it a tropical feel. The drink will be available on May 20 on a limited-time basis or until supplies run out.

“Taco Bell fans now have the opportunity to enjoy a delicious tropical, creamy twist on the iconic Baja Blast Freeze,” said Mike Ciresi, a DMI senior dairy scientist who works with Taco Bell. “The Baja Blast Colada Freeze shows that dairy plays a key role on Taco Bell’s beverage menu. Expanding beverage offerings to include dairy not only delights customers, but drives additional dairy sales and adds value to the checkoff investment.”

The drink builds off the success of last year’s Pineapple Whip Freeze, which used a similar dairy creamer. Ciresi, along with Emil Nashed, who leads DMI’s Global Innovation Partnerships science team, joined DMI’s Product Research Team and the Midwest Dairy Center at the University of Minnesota to crack the code on the creamer. The efforts led to a dairy-based shelf-stable creamer that consists of real cream and met Taco Bell’s product requirements, DMI said.

“The Pineapple Whip Freeze unlocked dairy in Taco Bell’s frozen beverage category,” Ciresi said. “Once we had a way to unlock the creamer, we had flexibility to experiment with flavors and other types of freezes. Pineapple Whip Freeze was a huge beverage launch for Taco Bell, and we’re building off that now.”

Heather Mottershaw, vice president of pipeline innovation and product development for Taco Bell, said the restaurant chain benefits greatly from dairy checkoff resources.

“We always love collaborating with DMI scientists and dreaming up amazing ideas together,” Mottershaw said. “The Baja Blast Colada is the perfect blend of signature Baja blast with a pineapple-coconut tropical creamer.”

For information about the dairy checkoff, visit www.usdairy.com.