Bottles of Fairlife, which is the utopian-sounding name that has been bestowed on Coca-Cola’s “premiumization of milk,” will finally hit stores later this month. It’s got half the sugar, none of the lactose, and more protein and calcium than non-premium milk produced by non-Coca-Cola-affiliated cows. “We’ll charge twice as much for it as the milk we’re used to buying,” an executive said last week, because all that dairy innovation comes with a price. Not only that, but even though it’s going to carry a heftier price tag, Milk 2.0 is going to “rain money” for its soft-drink overlords.
Or that’s the hope, according to Coca-Cola, which pointed to its Simply juice line as an example of a beverage other than soda that’s paid off in the longer term. Dairy-industry types are questioning the logic behind the soft-drink giant’s headlong dive into milk, however, sales of which have been in decline for decades. Soda is also in free fall.
Also adding to the odds against a forecast of Freeline raining cash for the corporation is the key finding that consumers apparently do not think there is such a thing as “premium milk.” According to Nielsen, they just buy what costs less money. So there’s that, and in addition to all these obstacles are a series of new ads being decried as sexist. Besides the “Drink What She’s Wearing” one here. Yes, that woman is “clothed” in a stream of milk, weighing herself on a scale. In an ad. In 2014. There’s nothing premium about that at all.