13 Products to Help Develop a Strong Dairy Program

Milk

C-store retailers “need to think about the store as the consumer does—an ecosystem of products and services across the entire store that solves a purpose, fulfills a need or provides an experience,” said Mary Kay O’Connor, vice president of special projects for Madison, Wis.-based International Dairy-Deli-Bakery Association (IDDBA).

Across dairy’s multiple segmentations, O’Connor said that understanding dairy shopping trips “helps you understand how to capitalize better on natural connections in the store to sell more products, make visits easier for shoppers and more beneficial for your store’s sales growth.”

O-Connor said that dairy products in the c-store “fit well in this equation. They are fresh, nutritious, minimally processed foods often packaged as single-serve [items] that can be enjoyed on the run. They have a strong sales partnership with other items in the store.”

What follows are 13 dairy options across various segments, including fluid milk, cup yogurt, fruit smoothies, drinkable yogurt, cheese and more, that can be merchandised alone or in tandem with other categories.

Nesquik

Nesquik

In Fabulous Freddy’s stores in Nevada and Utah, flavored ready-to-drink milk is “a strong segment in our dairy section,” said Patsy Varpula, pricebook manager for the Las Vegas-based chain. “Nesquik and TruMoo came out with a protein-loaded version of milk and flavored milk that adults love as much as kids.” Nesquik has 45% less sugar than the leading chocolate syrup brand, according to the company's website, and it contains seven essential vitamins and minerals. 

Chobani

Drink Chobani

Fabulous Freddy’s is taking drinkable yogurt and attempting to leverage the trend toward millennials and their snacking habits, said Varpula. “The snack consumption trend these days is an ‘on-the-go, in-the-car’ type of trend we’ve been seeing, and this particular yogurt does not require a spoon. It’s like an adult version of Go-Gurt.” Drink Chobani is one of three finalists in the dairy category for CSP’s and Convenience Store ProductsBest New Product Contest.

 

Horizon

Horizon

Horizon Organic Milk Aseptic Quarts is the second of three finalists in dairy for CSP’s and Convenience Store Products’ Best New Product Contest in this slideshow. Horizon’s new aseptic quarts of organic milk lock in taste and extend the milk’s shelf life to 60 days. The smaller size offers a lower shelf price and is available in Whole Milk, Reduced Fat Milk and Chocolate Lowfat Milk.

 

Yoplait

Yoplait

General Mills Convenience’s Yoplait Dippers is the third of three dairy finalists for CSP’s and Convenience Store Products’ Best New Product Contest. Not yet available in c-stores, Yoplait Dippers pair nonfat Yoplait Greek yogurt with crunchy snacks for dipping in six combinations, including Vanilla Bean + Honey Oat Crisps. Yoplait Dippers contain no artificial colors, flavors or high fructose corn syrup. 

 

Blue Bell

Blue Bell

Blue Bell debuted its newest ice cream flavor, Banana Split Sundae, which hit shelves in late August. The seasonal variety features banana ice cream blended with almonds, pineapples and cherries and swirled with strawberry and chocolate sauces.

Savile Row Cheese Co.

Savile Row Cheese Co.

Cheese is a high-margin product. “How does your c-store stack up as a destination for specialty varieties? It is not only an on-trend sales category, but 98% of shoppers buy other items while shopping for premium cheese, such as crackers, yogurt, bakery sweet goods and cookies and deli dips and spreads,” according to O’Connor of IDDBA. British cheese importer Somerdale International launched a new line of cheeses for the U.S. foodservice sector called Savile Row Cheese Co. The line features classic British cheeses such as Mature Farmhouse Cheddars and Blue Stilton.
 

Butterball

If your store offers personalized coffee and deli sandwiches—like many do—you may want to use some of the specialty cheeses on prepared deli sandwiches to generate interest and boost future specialty cheese sales, said O’Connor. One option is to use specialty cheese with a deli option such as Butterball Foodservice’s new Farm to Family turkey line, which is raised on local, family-owned farms and fed an all-vegetarian diet, according to the company. The line features turkey burgers, ground turkey, turkey breast and ready-to-cook roasts. 

Fairlife

Fairlife

Milk is a trip driver, purchased in more than 50% of quick trips to a store, according to the Midwest Dairy Association. “Anything a retailer can do to maximize value-added development the better, because consumers are trading up from conventional milk.” Fairlife Smart Milkshakes are a nutritious treat made to fuel a user's potential with protein, antioxidants and fiber, according to the company. It also contains less sugar than low-fat milk. As an aside, the majority of consumers use dairy milk as an addition to a food or drink or as an ingredient. “So create milk offerings complementing a particular food or beverage,” O’Connor said.

 

Jamba Juice

Jamba Juice

IDDBA’s latest Dairy Superconsumer research report found many people might not think of dairy as a complement to exercise, but active dairy superconsumers make protein a critical component of their carefully managed diets. Dairy superconsumers spend $634 a year on dairy products, which is $300 more than the average consumer spends. Plus, the superconsumer “shops at five different stores to get all the dairy they need,” said O’Connor. Jamba Juice Smoothie Kits are one example of an option ideal for both pre- and post-workout fuel and recovery. 

Crystal Farms

Crystal Farms

Breakfast snacking options to complement dairy segments include bananas, apples and hard-boiled eggs. “In the convenience store I shop, some items, such as hard-boiled eggs, milk and fruit cups, are bundled and sold at a special price,” O’Connor said. Crystal Farms offers 6 Peeled Hard Boiled Eggs in three individual packs of two.

 

Jell-O

Jell-O

IDDBA's Dairy Superconsumer research also found that snackable dairy items (yogurt, dips, cottage cheese and hummus) are seen as better-for-you alternatives to sweet junk food. “Chilled dairy snacks are just as accessible as junk food, but leave you feeling guilt free,” said O’Connor, who also made mention of refrigerated pudding such as Jell-O Pudding Ready to Eat Chocolate Vanilla Swirl. 

Land O'Lakes

Land O Lakes

Fat is back. “There’s certainly a renewed understanding of fat’s wellness attributes—take eating particular fats to reduce overweight. Fat calories speed up your metabolism. Butter’s simplicity ties to real, natural, fresh trends. Innovative flavors, spreads and handcrafted European-style butters could be featured with specialty breads in-store,” said O’Connor. Land O'Lakes European Style Super Premium Butter has a creamier texture and richer flavor, according to the company. It’s made with fresh sweet cream and churned for a higher milk fat content. 

chia milk

Customers are looking for new taste experiences. “They’re adventuresome eaters and single-serve products offer a great way to economically introduce them to bold and spicy, such as raspberry habanero, blackberry serrano and chipotle pineapple yogurts; or milk enhanced with grains like chia, flaxseed, amaranth; or with new indulgent flavors—salted caramel, mint chocolate chip or coffee milk,” said O’Connor.