2017 fluid milk retail sales are down -2.6% ytd (thru 6-25), a slightly more accelerated loss vs. 2016. However, the decline in Q2 has moderated to -2.0% with nearly all regions posting softer losses than in Q1. The volume leader, white gallon milk, is driving overall fluid milk declines.
A portion of the continued downturn at the grocery channel is shifting to other channels such as supercenters/Wal Mart.
Whole-fat continues to post growth and is now is in its fourth year of increase (up 3.5% 2017ytd). The whole fat trend links both to a growing body of research indicating that whole fat may be beneficial to health as well as consumers’ desire for more natural foods.
Lactose-free (up 11.5%) and flavored milk (up 4.2%) continue as bright spots, as well as some more niche value-added segments, including refuel milk (up 21.9%).
Non-dairy alternative beverages continue to grow but at a more moderate pace (+1.7% ytd); almond and coconut continue to be the growth engines.