In the seemingly ever-expanding plant-based product market, a new line of oat drinks and blends are coming to grocery stores next year. These packages will almost surely stand out from their shelf-mates, because they’ll be carrying the label of America’s top Greek yogurt brand, Chobani.

Come January, the company will launch Chobani Oat, which includes four beverages labeled “oat drinks,” four flavors of “oat blend,” and three options of “oat blends” with mix-ins. All of the products will be dairy- and gluten-free and made with organic oats.

This venture will create the largest expansion ever for a company that’s seen increasing sales despite national yogurt consumption falling a pound and a half per person between 2013 and 2018.

“The Chobani Oat platform isn’t meant to be a replacement for dairy,” the company said. Earlier this year, they also introduced a line of coconut-based items. “As for most, it’s not an either/or world between dairy and nondairy products.”

Still a dairy company with new ideas
Chobani asserts that they remain a dairy company, and this is certainly fair coming from an organization that has changed the yogurt market. Their innovations go beyond Greek-style yogurt to include kid-focused milkshakes and on-the-go products, as well as a variety of popular mix-in flavors from simple peach to mint chocolate chip.

Hamdi Ulukaya, the founder of Chobani, was raised on a dairy farm in Turkey and has voiced his appreciation of dairy farmers and the industry. Chobani’s products are manufactured at its plants in New York and Idaho — some of the largest dairy processing facilities in the world.

The yogurt maker has often gained recognition not only for its food but also for its social activism. This summer, the announcement of Chobani’s support of a fair-trade program for American dairy farmers was received with much fanfare.

Eager to continue this stance as a friend of dairy, nearly concurrently with the oat beverage introduction, the company announced it will also be producing a new line of dairy coffee creamers. Chobani believes there is market space for healthier creamers that are dairy-based, as opposed to many oil-added options popular presently.

The company spoke of using these two very different avenues to meet its mission of providing more options and better food to more people.

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(c) Hoard's Dairyman Intel 2019
December 2, 2019
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