Little Melton yoghurts are based on an Australian family recipe but will be produced in the UK, using British milk. Listings have been secured in Harrods and fine foods store Partridges, where the yoghurts (rsp: £2.30 for a 430g pot) will go on sale in April.
Conversations with the mults are ongoing, and Little Melton CEO Mark Collins said he expected the six-strong range in passion fruit, strawberries & cream, blueberry, pear, mango and honeyed flavours to be listed in at least one within the next three months. The yoghurts are made with full-fat milk, have a thick, Greek-style yoghurt texture and come with two layers of fruit. They are available in two sizes a 430g big pot and a 150g tub.
Australia's The Queensland Yoghurt Company currently shifts 70,000 tonnes of the yoghurts a week, while Piako, which makes them under licence in New Zealand, has turned the yoghurts into a NZ$5.5m brand. The yoghurts are also sold in the US under the name Noosa.
The UK venture named Little Melton after the Norfolk town where the yoghurts will be made is backed by Piako using funds it won in a New Zealand award. To get the UK business off the ground it has built a dedicated factory in Little Melton to avoid having to divulge its secret yoghurt recipe to a third party.
Little Melton's positioning at the indulgent end of the market as well as its emphasis on thick texture and see-through packaging will prompt comparisons with Twekkelo, the yoghurt range made by Dutch company De Zuivelhoeve. Collins insisted there was "no direct competitor" to Little Melton in the UK but admitted Twekkelo was the closest match.
Little Melton also has plans to branch out into frozen yoghurt once its main chilled range has become established.