Greek FroYo & Frozen Kefir: Fad or Fab?
Vermont-based activist food company Ben & Jerry’s has revealed a new line of frozen yogurt products based on Greek yogurt. The line up includes four flavors that will come in pint and snack-size containers. The product is said to have more protein and fewer calories than the standard B&J product. According to notes in the press release, while Ben & Jerry’s suppliers do not use hormones in the milk, they allege other suppliers do not always make that promise…
The four new flavors include:
Strawberry Shortcake: Strawberry Greek Frozen Yogurt with Shortbread Pieces
Raspberry Fudge Chunk: Raspberry Greek Frozen Yogurt with Fudge Chunks
Banana Peanut Butter: Banana Greek Frozen Yogurt with Peanut Butter Swirls
Blueberry Vanilla Graham: Blueberry & Vanilla Greek Frozen Yogurt with Graham Cracker Swirls
This new market is not without competition. Lifeway Kefir joined the space as did the major supermarket chains.
According to Lifeway’s announcement and information on their website, these contain cane sugar. The Ben and Jerry’s formula uses sugar and corn syrup solids, which lead to sugar/serving around 19-23 grams, versus around 16 grams/serving for Lifeway. In addition to those featured above, frozen kefir also comes in pumpkin, dulce de leche, and chocolate. The company also makes frozen yogurt with a flavor roster that includes Blood Orange Swirl, Chocolate Swirl and Honey Swirl.
It feels a bit wrong that Ben & Jerry’s has higher sugar content and cannot guarantee hormone free milk. It’s almost strange that the publicly-traded Lifeway Kefir seems more transparent but maybe there’s a difference in the products too. We’re talking about frozen greek yogurt versus frozen kefir.
But, Lifeway also recently announced a pilot program to test soft serve kefir, beginning with a kiosk offering its starfruit flavor in the Whole Foods in Wellesley. The kiosk, which can produce soft serve and smoothies, is an eye at a new market, one where I imagine Lifeway would aim to take a bite out of the frozen yogurt market dominated by the likes of Red Mango and Pinkberry. Boasting no HFCS and 10 live probiotic cultures, Lifeway seems prepared to take on the big names through product differentiation.