Turning gold into white butter


Fonterra’s Research and Development Centre alongside its global ingredients business, NZMP, has developed a new white butter product to meet growing demand from manufacturers in the Middle East market.

Although Fonterra’s butter is renowned amongst Middle East consumers for its famous golden appearance thanks to grass fed cows, a niche segment of manufacturers prefer white butter as a processing ingredient for their food products.

These Middle Eastern food manufacturers have traditionally sourced butter from grain fed cows which produce dairy products with a pale colour.  
Fonterra’s Dairy Foods Category Director of NZMP, Casey Thomas, said Fonterra seized an opportunity to respond to customer needs by developing a high quality white butter ingredient through an innovative manufacturing process where they are now able to reduce the golden appearance of the butter without impacting its quality.
“While our yellow butter already sees great success in this market, we saw an opportunity to tap into this new area for customers to use in a variety of applications such as spreadable jar cheese, recombined cream cheese, and could soon be used in ice cream.”
NZMP General Manager of Middle East and Africa Santiago Aon said, “This innovative approach is already seeing strong results. Our customers have had positive feedback about the white butter – it is performing to our expectations as a high quality ingredient for food businesses across the Middle East region.”
The Fonterra Research and Development Centre and NZMP team both have a long history of partnering with customers to not only provide them with steady supplies of ingredients, but creating business solutions with them.

The product is now available in Saudi Arabia, Iran, Bahrain, Turkey and Pakistan. Future plans include launching the product in Egypt, Algeria, Morocco and even South America.