“Dean services more than 140,000 locations, so they’ve got a very significant reach for us,” director of media relations at Organic Valley, Hans Eisenbeis, told DairyReporter.
Dean Foods will provide processing services and distribution through its refrigerated distribution network. Organic Valley will provide a select portfolio of recognized brands and products, marketing, and access to an organic milk supply from America's largest cooperative of organic dairy farmers.
According to Eisenbeis, Organic Valley is committed to the joint venture for eight years starting in mid-late 2017.
"Adding Organic Valley to the current lineup of Dean Foods branded dairy products enables Dean Foods to offer retail customers the largest and most comprehensive dairy offering across multiple segments. It also allows us to further leverage our manufacturing and distribution network," said Gregg Tanner, CEO of Dean Foods.
“Anybody who’s in this industry now, sees organic as a growth opportunity,” Eisenbeis said.
Fulfilling consumer expectations
“We’re finding consumers are starting to expect it [organic dairy products] wherever they shop,” Eisenbeis said.
“This is part of that larger trend of bringing organic to the people.”
According to Eisenbeis, organic fluid milk often serves as the “gateway” into purchasing more organic dairy products.
Through its direct store delivery system, Dean Foods will be handling and distributing Organic Valley’s HTST (high pressure/short time) products to all of its mainstream grocery and convenience store locations.
"Now more Organic Valley organic milk will be on more grocery shelves across the country," George Siemon, CEO of Organic Valley said.
"We believe the dynamic and growing Organic Valley brand of organic milk is the perfect complement to our own category-leading DairyPure and TruMoo brands and gives Dean Foods a strong position in the organic dairy segment," Tanner said.
“A family farm with an average of 72 cows is now able to sit at the table with a large CPG like Dean Foods,” Eisenbeis said.