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Grocery partnerships drive dairy sales

April 1, 2024


4 minute read

Checkoff seeks opportunities to drive dairy product sales, starting with partners eager to work with checkoff to spotlight the dairy case. In 2023, two grocery retail partners saw significant results as we partnered on different campaigns throughout the year. Dierbergs and Coborn’s moved incremental pounds of milk by bringing nutritious dairy products to their customers.

Dierbergs Markets

Midwest Dairy and Dierbergs Markets kicked off their 2023 partnership in the spring with two separate campaigns. At the end of March, Dierbergs worked with Caitlin Ladd, one of their brand ambassadors (social influencers who work exclusively with them), to develop a recipe and promote lactose-free milk. Ladd created a brownie recipe and talked about the benefits of using lactose-free milk for her son, who has lactose intolerance. You can watch the Reel here.   

In April, Dierbergs and Midwest Dairy created another campaign focusing on driving sales and trust while highlighting cheese. Dierbergs worked with their recipe development team to develop a Three Cheese Quiche recipe that was promoted in digital ads, on Instagram, and through email. Running in conjunction with the recipe was a promotion for a shredded cheese brand that Dierbergs selected. Customers would earn $2 in Dierbergs Rewards Points when they bought two bags of shredded cheese. Dierbergs also updated the Undeniably Dairy blog page and used in-store door clings with QR codes linking customers to the blog page. You can see the Quiche Reel here, and the Undeniably Dairy blog page can be seen here.  

The partnership continued into the summer, with two more campaigns celebrating National Ice Cream Day in July and back-to-school in August. In July, Dierbergs worked with their vendor community to support the campaign with discounted ice cream. The promotion was shared in their weekly ad, in social media, through in-store signage, and included in an email blast. The email blast was opened and read by 55 percent of those who received it, resulting in a direct correlation to coupon clicks. The social post had over 80,000 impressions and a higher-than-average engagement rate. Dierbergs also focused on driving dairy sales for the back-to-school campaign by leveraging their Rewards program and an ad block in their weekly ad. For the ad block, Dierbergs contacted their vendor community to provide deeper discounts on dairy products, with Midwest Dairy supporting the marketing. Dierbergs reports that 77 percent of customers who purchased the string cheese deal were reward members, showing that these customers are looking for special pricing with the intent to purchase. These two campaigns combined sold 196,012 incremental pounds of milk (IPM).  

Dierbergs is a St. Louis, Missouri-based grocer with 26 locations in Missouri and Illinois. Throughout 2023, Midwest Dairy partnered with Dierbergs on six activations that impressively drove over 500,000 IPM.  


Coborn’s has also been an active checkoff partner. During April, Midwest Dairy partnered with Coborn’s to call out the sustainability efforts of dairy farmers while driving incremental sales of dairy products. This campaign included weekly emails, Facebook and Instagram posts, banner ads on, Kids Cook at Home Cook-A-Long show (with the largest class to date), TV news show support, in-store intercom messaging, gas station TV messages, and in-store signage. Together, we reached over 650,000 consumers with our Sustainable Dairy messages in this campaign.  

Midwest Dairy partnered with Coborn’s again later in the year to offer consumers cheesy recipes to help enhance their grilled cheeseburger experience. Coborn’s showcased these delicious, nutritious, and tasty recipes with unique cheese options and vendor coupons to celebrate National Dairy Month. “Your burger’s missing something… the perfect topping. Cheese always hits the spot – it is local, nutritious, and udder-ly delicious,” messaging brought consumers into their dairy aisles. 

Coborn’s Dietitian, Jessica Talbot, spotlighted the cheesy recipes and health benefits of protein, calcium, and vitamin B12 during the June 19th Twin Cities Live episode, which also featured a guest appearance from Minnesota’s Princess Kay, Rachel Rynda. This monthlong event also included weekly emails, Facebook and Instagram posts with video Reels from local dietitians, banner ads on, in-store intercom messaging, gas station TV messages, and in-store signage. This campaign sold approximately 770,000 incremental pounds of milk! 

St. Cloud, Minnesota-based Coborn’s currently has 77 grocery stores across Minnesota, North Dakota, South Dakota, Wisconsin, Michigan, and Illinois under the Coborn’s, Cash Wise Foods, Marketplace Foods, Hornbacher’s, and Tadych’s Marketplace Foods banners, as well as fuel, liquor, and pharmacy locations.