A small onsite lab is used for creating and testing new recipes for Silver Pail’s 30 lines. The firm employs two chefs, and its senior managers, including Murphy, have technology backgrounds.
“From the UK, we’re seeing a lot of requests and interest for innovative, healthy products, like ‘frogurt’: frozen yogurt with fruit mixed in,” says Murphy. “But in the Middle East, the trend is for different ‘sweet tooth’ flavors like toffee and caramel.”
“Within the UK and Ireland, ‘healthy’ is a big driver at the moment,” she says.
This includes so-called “value-added” products, high in protein from acid whey:
“We’re manufacturing a whey product on the behalf of two London entrepreneurs who came up with that idea. They came to us last year and certainly the whole added-protein thing does seem to be really taking off. That’s the whole premise of their product.”
However, health claims do not mean instant success for dairy producers, Murphy said. “In the past we’ve done a lot of work as a company looking at low-fat or fat-free healthy-type options, for example frozen yogurt.
“What we’ve found is that frozen yogurt doesn’t seem to sell particularly well.
“When people are having a yogurt, it’s part of their normal diet, so they want it to be healthy. Whereas when they’re having ice cream they know they’re being bad and they don’t really tend to go for the healthier option.”