Coca-Cola has launched a new kind of milk nationwide that costs twice the price of regular milk.
The beverage, called Fairlife, doesn’t contain lactose and it has 50% more protein, 30% more calcium, and 50% less sugar than regular milk.
Coca-Cola executives believe the new milk will “rain money” for the company.
We decided to try it out.
We tested three kinds of Fairlife: Chocolate, fat free, and 2% reduced fat milk. The company also sells whole milk.
The chocolate milk was the crowd favourite.
It’s very sweet, but not overpowering, and the consistency is creamier and thicker than regular milk.
A couple reviewers compared it to Yoo-Hoo chocolate drink.
“It definitely tasted like a treat, not an everyday drink,” Business Insider reporter Emmie Martin said.
One cup of the chocolate milk contains 140 calories, 12 grams of sugar, and 13 grams of protein. By comparison, one cup of Nestle’s Nesquick chocolate milk contains 150 calories, 24 grams of sugar, and 8 grams of protein.
The photo below shows the nutritional information on the 2% and chocolate versions. The 2% milk has 6 grams of sugar and 13 grams of protein per cup, compared to 12 grams of sugar and 8 grams of protein per cup of regular milk.
Next we tried the fat free and 2% reduced fat milks.
Most people agreed that the 2% milk tasted similar to whole milk. Many reviewers loved the milky taste, while others thought it was too overpowering.
Business Insider video producer Sam Rega said he would find it hard to distinguish between regular milk and Fairlife.
“Both skim and 2% had an after-taste, but otherwise I couldn’t tell much of a difference from this and regular milk,” he said.
Fairlife milk is made on a dairy farm with “fully sustainable high-care processes with animals” and “has a proprietary milk filtering process” that removes much of the sugar, Coca-Cola’s North American chief Sandy Douglas said at Morgan Stanley’s Global Consumer Conference in November.
“It’s basically the premiumization of milk,” Douglas said.
The filtering process removes the lactose and much of the sugar and leaves behind more of the protein and calcium, according to Sue McCloskey, who developed the system used to make Fairlife with her husband Mike McCloskey.
“No protein powders or additional supplements are added,” McCloskey said in a phone interview with reporters on Tuesday.
The product also has a shelf life of 90 days, compared to regular milk that typically expires within a couple weeks of purchase.
This is the beginning of a long-term investment in the dairy business for Coca-Cola.
“We’re going to be investing in the milk business for a while to build the brand so it won’t rain money in the early couple of years,” Douglas said. “But like Simply [orange juice], when you do it well it rains money later.”
Coca-Cola’s investment comes at a tough time for the milk industry. Fluid milk sales have been declining for the past four decades.
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