For more than 50 years, Better Than Milk has been under Panos Brands and selling rice and soy-based milk alternative powders, used for blending into beverages and other food products. Now the team is modernizing the brand with new packaging and a ready-to-drink line.
The Organic Alternative Milk Beverages are launching with Oat, Almond Original, Almond Unsweetened, Rice with Calcium and Rice with Hazelnut. All flavors are organic, vegan, certified gluten free, non-GMO verified and free from dairy, lactose, soy, sulfites, carrageenan, cholesterol and anything artificial.
Better Than Milk sources spring water used in the drinks from a spring 450 meters above sea level in the Lessini Mountains of Northern Italy, where they are manufactured. The line is packaged in 33.8oz Tetra Pak slim cartons, which are fully recyclable.
Modernizing to stay competitive
Jennifer Noymer, brand manager for Better Than Milk, spoke to DairyReporter at Fancy Food about what separates this collection from the pack of plant-based milk alternatives. With zero added sugar, she considers them keto-friendly, though they are not certified as such. They are also shelf stable and designed for use in coffee, smoothies, cereal and recipes.
She said that Better Than Milk is going through a rebranding to appear more modern and eye-catching. This includes a new website and updated packaging of the powders to mirror that of the beverages, to stand out on the crowded shelves of dairy and dairy-alternatives.
“We’re definitely not out to tackle the milk category. It’s really to enhance and highlight plant-based living and vegan options,” Noymer said.
The team also didn’t seriously consider using soy as a base for the beverages because they wanted to meet more of the ‘modern health attributes’ in plant beverages.
“This launch was a product absolutely based on consumer trends, whether it’s vegan, whether it’s just adding more plant-based and removing more animal based-products from your diet, or just making a better balance of both of them,” she said.
Making plant-based accessible nationwide
Noymer anticipates that the brand will grow in the future with more varieties and flavors, and said that Better Than Milk is always watching the market with a critical eye to anticipate new trends and potential nut and grain bases.
“Just because there are a lot of plant-based options that are out there, just because it’s a trend, if we can’t develop a product ourselves that’s really going to hit all the marks, we’re not going to put it out there,” Noymer said.
Better Than Milk plans to launch nationwide this fall, in both major retailers and specialty natural channels. Noymer said that while the plant-based trends point to the coasts, the brand wants to be accessible everywhere.
“Obviously you want to go where the demand is, but also you want to make sure you’re one of the first arrivers, if you can be, to places where the trend hasn’t really picked up,” she said.
Steven Grossman, president and CEO of Panos Brands, said, “Consumers of all ages and lifestyles are increasingly incorporating plant-based alternatives into their diets as part of their efforts to lead more health-focused lives.”
“With the demonstrated growth and continued momentum toward these health trends, there couldn’t be a better time to introduce Better Than Milk Organic Alternative Milk Beverages nationwide.”