Grocer utilizing tech to produce more beverages with a long shelf life
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Tamarack Farms Dairy is Ohio’s largest fluid dairy product producer. (CoStar)

As part of a large-scale effort to deliver high protein drinks, non-dairy and dairy products with a long shelf life, The Kroger Co. has introduced a state-of-the-art aseptic milk line at Tamarack Farms Dairy in Newark, Ohio. The line expansion will enable the manufacturing of products including half and half, heavy whipping cream, coffee creamers and Carbmaster milk beverage.

The 20-acre Tamarack Farms Dairy is Ohio’s largest fluid dairy product producer, serving both Kroger’s e-commerce channel and approximately 160 stores throughout Ohio and West Virginia. The new line will allow the facility to support more than 150 jobs while also promoting the grocer’s use of modern technology.

“Kroger is Fresh for Everyone, and that means we are committed to sourcing and manufacturing only the best and freshest products,” said Doug Blacksten, senior director of supply chain and manufacturing at Kroger. “This cutting-edge innovation at Tamarack Farms Dairy underscores that commitment, improving our ability to offer high-quality dairy products to Kroger customers.”

“Kroger’s significant investment transforms the Tamarack Farms Dairy into an aseptic processing facility, creating a new market for Ohio’s dairy industry,” said Tim Derickson, senior managing director of food and agribusiness at JobsOhio. “The extended shelf-life dairy product that will come from the cutting-edge operations in the Licking County facility will meet growing demand for Kroger’s customers nationwide and boost demand for dairy farmers throughout Central Ohio.”

The grocer also recently announced that it is giving both shoppers and its bottom line a boost by expanding its loyalty program nationwide. During a strong first quarter earnings report, the company said it will roll out its Boost membership program nationally over the next few weeks, offering customers two different membership levels and benefits such as 2X fuel points earned on every dollar spent, extra savings on Kroger’s private brands and free two-hour or next-day delivery.

Serving 60 million households annually nationwide through a digital shopping experience, and almost 2,800 retail food stores under a variety of banner names, Cincinnati-based Kroger is No. 4 on The PG 100, Progressive Grocer’s 2022 list of the top food and consumables retailers in North America.

With calving underway, dairy farmers are being urged to plan ahead to combat feed shortages.

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