The two companies have signed a long-term 21-year strategic agreement, giving Arla Foods license to continue to manufacture, distribute and market Starbucks milk-based ready-to-drink (RTD) coffee beverages for the EMEA region (Europe, Middle East and Africa.)
Duncan Moir, vice president of channel development and foodservice, Starbucks EMEA, said the relationship with Arla Foods over the past seven years has seen RTD business grow by an average of 40% per year across EMEA.
Arla 2020 strategy
Hanne Søndergaard, executive vice president and CMO at Arla Foods, said the deal adds value to the cooperative’s farmers’ milk.
“The partnership combines Arla’s extensive experience in manufacturing dairy beverages and our widespread distribution network with Starbucks’ unique coffee expertise,” Søndergaard said.
Opportunities within milk-based beverages is an important focus area in Arla’s Good Growth 2020 strategy, the company said.
“It is our ambition to be a leading provider of milk-based beverages in Northern Europe, Asia, the Middle East and Northern Africa in 2020 and the new strategic licensing agreement makes the Starbucks partnership a vital part of delivering on this target and we believe that innovation is the key to future success,” Søndergaard added.
“Our recent launches of new Starbucks Double Shot products are great examples of our joint commitment to innovation and to consumers.”
Launched in 38 countries
In 2010, Starbucks chose Arla Foods as its license partner to manufacture, distribute and market its milk-based ready-to-drink coffee beverages for supermarkets and convenience stores across the EMEA region.
By 2018, Arla had launched Starbucks beverages in 38 countries across EMEA and expects to sell more than 110m units per year. The products are produced at Arla Foods’ sites in Esbjerg, Denmark and are made from milk from Arla Foods’ 11,200 farmer-owners and 100% arabica, ethically sourced coffee from Starbucks Coffee Company.