Liquid gold

Bottles of milk

The milk category remains one of the cornerstones of convenience. It is an area where customers are reliant on their local shop, and so ensuring the fixture is doing everything it needs to is of huge importance.

With local sourcing playing such an important role in convenience, it’s worth remembering the role that milk plays within that. It may be some time since it was delivered door to door, but Müller Wiseman Dairies’ regional labels have been helping the firm’s customers meet the increasing consumer-led demand for local products for the past 25 years.

Its Black and White brand, which celebrated its 25th anniversary last year, is now worth over £112m.

Sandy Wilkie, Business & Relationship Development Director, says: “The Produce with Provenance message is an increasingly crucial one and something we are continuing to focus our attention on. We are proud that we can source and trace all our milk, and we know this is what our consumers have loves about Black and White over the past quarter of a century. Produce with Provenance will remain a key focus for us going forward and we have a number of exciting developments planned involving a continued focus on regionality and traceability within our Black and White brand.”

Wilkie says that customers have consistently remained loyal to the Müller Wiseman Black and White fresh milk range – available in the traditional whole, semi and skimmed variants – and in particular the regional labels, which are key sales drivers.

“Consumers increasingly demand traceability within fresh produce and by offering milk with a clear link to the area where it is produced, without adding cost to the retailer, we can add value to our milk which can be passed on to consumers in the form of confidence, peace of mind and pride in quality regional milk and products,” says Wilkie. “Our broad range of regional labels helps Müller Wiseman customers in the convenience retail sector meet this increasing consumer-led demand for produce with provenance.

Since appointing a new Commercial Director in Dan Howell, the company has been pushing its ambitions to be the ‘biggest and best fresh milk business’ in the country.

Howell says: “We want to reinvigorate the milk category by developing a compelling category vision that will create value for all, now and in the future. By looking at consumer and shopper insight we will be able to tailor innovation to unlock category growth opportunities. We want to work with our customers to bring the milk fixture to life. We want to help our customers to drive shopper loyalty and increased value by having the right range in the right stores, with the optimum fixture flow and signage to encourage trade up.”

Nourishing start Can of Nurishment

Flavoured milk continues to grow in popularity, as do functional products. Combining these two qualities then, is not a bad idea. That’s the USP of Nurishment, a self-styled nutritionally enriched milk drink.

Nurishment supplies consumers with much of the day-to-day goodness they need, including vitamins, minerals, calcium and as much as 20g of protein per pack.

“Consumers are increasingly looking for two things from their food and drink as their lives become more hectic,” explains Nyree Chambers, Head of Marketing for the brand. “Firstly, they seek functional products which could have a positive impact on their bodies, and secondly, they want to consume these products without interrupting their routine – meaning convenient formats are key.”

Müller Wiseman’s top tips
  • Ensure that the refrigeration of the milk is below 5°C. “We work hard to ensure the ‘chill chain’ is not broken from the moment the milk is collected from farm to the point of delivery,” says the company. It is vitally important that this is continued in-store for the quality of the product to be maintained
  • Maintenance of the milk fixture is crucial. MWD teams encourage retailers to review the chiller every hour to ensure it is tidy and that stocks have been rotated to minimise waste
  • One statistic to consider is that most milk is sold after 3pm so it is important that this is taken into consideration when reviewing ordering
  • Allow milk to be visible from the door: making it visible from the door of the store and ensuring the most popular variants (i.e. two-litre semi-skimmed) are at eye level will help boost sales.