- Peak Yogurt, a San Francisco-based startup, is producing a triple-cream yogurt containing 15% to 17% milk fat and low or no added sugar, according to Food Navigator. It is made with organic milk and cream from grass-fed cows, the company said.
- The product has 270 calories per five-ounce cup and is being sold online for $3.50 to $5 each and in stores for $2.49 to $2.99 each in California and Washington, Food Navigator reported. The yogurt comes in three flavors: plain, vanilla and strawberry.
- Evan Sims, founder and creator of Peak Yogurt, told Food Navigator the company is targeting those on ketogenic low-carb, high-fat diets, but the product isn't designed just for them. "Our ultimate target consumer is anyone that enjoys a high fat low sugar yogurt," he said.
Peak Yogurt is taking a risky bet that consumers will prefer taste and low sugar over low fat. The yogurt has a much higher calorie count and fat level than other yogurts such as General Mills' Yoplait, at 150 calories for six ounces and 3% total fat, or Dannon's whole-milk yogurt, at 140 calories for six ounces and 7% total fat.
But Yoplait and Dannon also have higher sugar levels — at 19 and 15 grams per serving, respectively — while Peak Yogurt has four to 11 grams per serving, depending on the variety. Yogurt brands are continuing to make changes to keep up with consumer demands. Dannon has been quietly reducing both fat and sugar in the past few years, hoping that consumers will like the change, while Yoplait has reduced sugar and ramped up protein level. According to the International Food Information Council Foundation, consumers might be more interested in limiting sugar consumption than in the milk fat level or calories per serving. The idea that low sugar is "healthier" could be a big advantage for Peak Yogurt.
Peak's strategy is to get people to try its products and buy in large quantities but still give consumers a chance for a refund if they don't like it. The brand has added a direct-distribution model and delivers larger quantities — 12, 24 or 36 cups — to all 50 states. While it's a more expensive way to buy the triple-cream yogurt than in its limited number of retail stores, the company offers a money-back guarantee for ordering a 12-pack starter kit as long as the return shipping cost is covered. The full refund could attract consumers who are hesitant to try the brand.
The company website also touts the convenience of its products — a simple, quick and complete breakfast or meal replacement. "So you've figured out that low-carb or keto works great for you, but do you really have time to cook bacon and eggs or a steak every morning? Our yogurt gives you complete whole-food nutrition with zero prep and will keep you energized for hours," it states.
Companies like Peak Yogurt will still have to contend with plant-based yogurt makers. Recent trends indicate shoppers are turning to plant-based yogurt and other non-dairy alternatives, although flavor and mouthfeel could be big draws when it comes to indulgent products such as triple-cream yogurt. But plant-based yogurt makers are also aware consumers want satisfying taste. Califia has been enjoying impressive sales growth with its dairy-free drinkable yogurt products, and the market is projected to rise 13% by 2022, according to Packaged Facts.
Peak could be on the right track with its triple-cream yogurt products if it targets the right consumers who prefer the taste of real dairy to alternatives. While non-dairy milk sales have jumped 61% in the past five years, many companies have found success in creating whole-milk and high-fat dairy products, whether it's in the form of cheese, milk or yogurt. Stonyfield Farms has continued to win fans with its organic, grass-fed and drinkable yogurts, while Brown Cow has been turning out its whole-milk, non-homogenized yogurts with cream on the top for 40 years.
Whether the ketogenic diet marketing strategy will attract enough shoppers is another question, but since most of Peak's sales are probably occurring online, it may come down to a matter of adequate marketing and advertising to get the company's name and its backstory out in the marketplace.