Dean Foods is America’s largest dairy producer and has operated for almost 100 years. It owns many subsidiaries and heads up lots of brands in the USA and despite their best efforts to make the business more agile and profitable they have filed for bankruptcy.
The company admits that they have been struggling for the last few years as dairy sales have been falling. They are trying to cope with extensive debt as well as difficulties in paying their employees pensions. They have managed to secure $850 million to keep the company going while they rearrange their debt and try to sell the company.
Dean Foods said in a statement that they are in talks with the Dairy Farmers of America on a potential deal, where the Dairy Farmers of America cooperative would buy pretty much all of the shares in the company. It has been a tough year for Dean Foods and it seems like it could get worse for other dairy suppliers around the world.
The global market for alternative milk seems to be consistently on the rise, up 3.5% from 2018 and topping $18 billion. While this may seem like a lot, it is still just a drop in the water compared to £120 billion annual global traditional milk market. However, experts are saying that with milk alternatives on the rise and traditional milk sales tumbling, this difference could be minimal over the next few decades.
Sales in milk alternatives have been increasing exponentially over the last 5 years or so, as it becomes trendy to drink soya milk, almond milk and other plant-based milk. In one year, sales of oat milk jumped over 600% to $53 million, which if it continues, will be one of the fastest-growing milk alternatives to date.