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Arla Foods partners with Mondelēz to launch Milka chocolate milk in Europe

2024-05-31 Food Ingredients First

Tag: Arla Foods


Arla Foods recently entered into a licensing agreement with US confectionary giant Mondelēz International. Under the agreement, the European dairy cooperative will produce, distribute and market chocolate milk under the Milka brand in Germany, Austria and Poland.

The chocolate milk is planned to launch in June and will be available in three different flavors and packaging sizes. Production will occur at an Arla Foods facility in Esbjerg, Denmark. With this partnership, Arla Foods combines its experience in dairy innovation with the brand recognition and consumer acceptance that Milka enjoys.

Dairy meets chocolate
Christian Fischer, senior vice president for milk-based beverages at Arla Foods, tells Food Ingredients First: “This launch helps Arla diversify its product portfolio and tap into the growing demand for convenient, ready-to-drink flavored milk options. This is in line with Arla Foods Future 26 strategy, wher the milk-based beverages business has been seleced to create future growth for our farmer owners.”

The dairy cooperative has selected popular flavors to deliver a familiar experience to consumers. “When it comes to chocolate milk, we also learned that consumers often don’t find the same level of indulgence that they find in other snacks or drinks. By adding real Milka chocolate into our products, we believe that we´ve managed to create the right offering for indulgence fans,” explains Fischer.

What consumer trends say
Mondelēz International owns Milka and has had several notable licensing partnerships in categories such as ice cream and baked goods.

Since indulgence is a defining feature of the milk-based beverage segment, a similar ethos underscores this new offering from the company. “Consumers look for things to look forward to and ways to have fun. At the same time, when budgets are under pressure, the need for value is accentuated: premium food and drink offerings are ideal as (relatively) affordable treats,” Fischer reveals.

This new agreement will allow consumers to taste Milka’s signature flavor in liquid form in the three countries wher the chocolate brand is a leading player.

Germany, Austria and Poland are well-established Arla markets, wher the company has a strong go-to-market setup for its beverage portfolio. “As Milka is also a beloved brand in many other European markets, we are constantly evaluating opportunities and will consider further expanding our partnership in the future,” he adds.

Sustainability measures
Dairy and chocolate players are responding to calls for better sustainability efforts, whether it is reducing on-farm carbon emissions, nclick="updateothersitehits('Articlepage','External','OtherSitelink','Arla Foods partners with Mondelēz to launch Milka chocolate milk in Europe','Arla Foods partners with Mondelēz to launch Milka chocolate milk in Europe','341180','', 'article','Arla Foods partners with Mondelēz to launch Milka chocolate milk in Europe');return no_reload();">innovating sugar-reduced products or adopting more environment-friendly product packaging.

Highlighting sustainability initiatives integral to the production of Milka chocolate milk, Fischer says: “We are currently using recycled PET in our bottles, 50% of which is currently recycled, and we are planning to increase the content to 100% soon.”

“All PET bottles are included in the deposit return scheme in Germany, and tethered caps have been applied. On the product side, we are living up to our internal milk-based beverages health guidelines with a maximum of 6 g added sugar per 100 mL of product.”


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