Monday, November 28, 2016

The Arla Promise

This was our breakfast during the presentation at the Arla Factory in Holstebro, Denmark. 
It was a typical breakfast spread - breads, deli meats, cheeses, jams, and Lurpak butter.

I must admit, because I see it so often, I have taken the Lurpak brand for granted.
Obviously, it is good butter therefore the choice of many, kind of like how Colgate 
has become toothpaste for most of us. 

You see, I am a butter monster. Sometimes I eat little pieces of bread just because they
help transport the silky, creamy yellow goodness to my stomach. 

So imagine my delight when I discovered that Lurpak butter is produced by Arla, the 5th
largest dairy company in the world and the biggest organic dairy company of them all! 
During our factory visit, we spotted an Arla truck delivering fresh milk from the farms. 
Fun fact: Did you know that 308,000 tons of raw milk is used to make 130,000 tons of 
butter in this facility each year? It is the biggest butter dairy in the world serving 
918 million consumer units!

Lurpak is produced only in Denmark and Arla takes serious measures to keep the quality 
at its highest. "Butter tasters" are employed to taste the product every 20 minutes during
production and Operations Engineer Jakob Pedersen has been doing it for 16 years!
 No wonder despite serving almost 1 billion consumers, they get only 55 complaints in
a year. Here Jakob shows us how he does quality checks, inspecting the butter up 
close and then taking a big spoonful into his mouth.

And that is me taking advantage of the situation, enjoying my 
own spoonful(s) and eating Lurpak butter like ice cream! 
I think I can live here happily ever after.

That is, until Holstebro Cream Cheese Factory. God, it smelled like heaven in there!
And it is one of the cleanest facilities I have ever been in.

Everything is automated, precise. Watch the video at the end of this post to see the action.

Check out all the exciting flavours. You name it, they've got it!
How about chanterelle cream cheese on your bagel today?

Best part is, there is absolutely no artificial ingredients in the mix. "Arla uses only the 
real deal for all its cream cheeses. There's real garlic pieces in our garlic cream cheese, 
bits of olives in our olive cream cheese," Arla Foods Philippines GM Jen Christian 
Nielsen proudly reports. Arla does not believe in artificial preservatives, 
and instead utilizes sweet buttermilk as stabilisers. 

And Kenneth Olesen guarding the goods from me. Lol.

So delicious we ate them right out of the tubs

My personal favorites are olive, tomato and basil, goat's cheese, horseradish, 
papaya and curry, and chocolate. I pray these will be available in Manila soon.

Cheese snobs will be ecstatic to know that Arla also produces very special small batch, 
single-farm artisan cheeses under the Arla Unika brand.

We were lucky enough to sample a few during our visit, and with Cheesemaster 
John Gynther himself

Nutty, creamy, caramel-y Havgus

Sweet, salty and full of umami Gammel Knas

And an interesting coffee cheese made with Coffee Collective's Guatemalan coffee. 
Bet you've never had anything like this before!

Cheese and tea pairing at 9:00am? Yessir!!!

The most special experience for me was visiting Faregard, one of the 12,600 farms 
Arla works hand in hand with.

There are 400 cows in Faregard and I must say each and every one of them looks 
healthy, meaty, very well taken care of.

It is so wonderful to see the cows live in a clean, stress-free environment, 
and are allowed to move around freely

They get clean water, nutritious food and soft beds

And enjoy a little play time, too! 

Of course, like every parent (although none will admit), Rasmus has his favorite child. 
When asked how he chose his favorite, he said it just came naturally, like the feeling 
he felt when he first met his wife! How adorable is that?!

As for me, my favorite cow will be the one that produces the most milk! Haha!

These are the cows that produce 40-70 litres of milk a day. Because they work harder,
they are rewarded a place in the VIP section where they enjoy all the good stuff in a cow's 
life, like feeds that are higher in nutrients and minerals...

... plus free massages anytime of day!

It is so heartwarming to see the hardwork and dedication that mother-and-son team 
Birtit Gade and Rasmus puts into providing their cows a home. They treat them
like family and with love and respect. Arla cows eat healthy and live happy, and
we all know that healthy and happy cows produce better and yummier milk!

With Senior GM for Arla Foods Philippines Jens Christian Nielsen, 
Cheryl Tiu and Pam Pastor. 

I have always loved Arla, and even more now after experiencing firsthand its company values, its faithfulness to deliver the promise of providing healthy, natural, responsible dairy products. 

Every time I see Arla products on supermarket shelves, I will remember the farms, the cows, the love that Arla farmers put into their work, the quality and consistency that Arla factories aim for to bring to the world food that is not just good and nourishing to the body, but also good and nourishing for the soul.

Arla Official Website
Arla Philippines Website
Arla Philippines Facebook
Arla Philippines Instagram

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