Tue, 10 Apr 2018
SWITZERLAND - Swiss retailer Coop has launched a new dairy product line sourced from cows fed exclusively on Swiss hay.
The new 'Heumilch' ('Hay Milk') private-label range includes milk, cheese and butter products and is available at all major Coop supermarkets in Switzerland, according to the retailer.
According to European Supermarket Magazine, Heumilch breeders have to meet the requirements of the Swiss Federal Agriculture Office's animal welfare programme.
This states that cows must spend at least 26 days a month on pastures in the summer and have access to outdoor areas all year.
Natural Food Cycle
The feeding of cows producing Heumilch dairy products follows the natural course of the year, meaning that they are fed with fresh herbs in summer and hay in winter, according to Coop.
Their diet is 100 per cent natural and doesn’t contain silage fodder, which improves the quality of the product.
Additionally, it is the diversity of Swiss grass and pastures that gives the product its distinct taste, the retailer added.
All of the Coop's own-brand Heumilch products bear the label of the Heumilch Association, which defines the requirements to which dairy producers and processors have to comply.
An independent body regularly monitors compliance with these guidelines.
Together with the Heumilch Association, Coop has set itself the goal of promoting Swiss milk as a quality product with high standards of animal welfare.
The retailer pays producers 73 cents for their milk, which is 5 cents more than the target price for conventional milk, the retailer said.
Coop Switzerland recorded a 3.1 per cent sales increase to CHF 29.2 billion in 2017, with sales in its retail business increasing by 1.4 per cent.
In the retail sector, Coop posted net sales of CHF 17.4 billion, up 1.4 per cent, as its supermarkets saw a 5.7 per cent increase in sales, as well as an increase in market share.