Valio increasing cheese exports to Sweden

Valio is expanding its cheese exports to Sweden and entering the cheese slices market, starting in May with full-fat cheese, Gouda and Port Salut slices ideal for Swedish tastes.

“Valio is actively seeking export markets for its cheeses since Russia halted food imports. We are the market leader in lactose free products in Sweden and have long-run experience of exporting fresh dairy products there. We believe that Swedish consumers will be attracted to our high-quality cheeses, too,” says Kimmo Luoma, Senior Vice President, Cheese at Valio.

Based on consumer testing, Valio concluded that full-fat cheese, Gouda and Port Salut slices would best suit the Swedish market in terms of taste. These same cheeses are sold in Finland under the Valio Turunmaa®, Valio Salaneuvos®, and Valio Luostari® brands.

Thinner slices give us the competitive edge

Sweden’s cheese market is fiercely competitive and imports account for 45%. Swedes consume more than 19 kilos of cheese per person per year, slightly less than in Finland but clearly above the EU average.

“Given the degree of competition we need to offer consumers something the competitors don’t. And in addition to excellent taste, that’s the thinnest cheese slices on the market,” says Teea Björklund, Category Manager for Valio cheeses.

The market for cheese slices in Sweden is small but growing. One-third of the country’s consumers think the currently available slices, on average 15–50% thicker than those in Finland depending on the type of cheese, are too thick.

“The rising trends in Sweden include ease of use and smaller package sizes, as the number of small households increases and consumers want to cut food wastage. And that’s exactly what our very thin cheese slices sold in 140 gram packages offer,” Teea promises.

Valio’s Swedish subsidiary Valio Sverige Ab was established in 1994. Valio was first to export lactose free milk to Sweden in 2002 and is still the market leader in lactose free products. In addition to the new cheese slices, Valio’s product range in Sweden includes e.g. yoghurts, kefirs, milks, cooking products, and Emmental and Cheddar cheeses. All Valio products sold in Sweden are manufactured in Finland.

Further information:

Kimmo Luoma, Senior Vice President, Cheese, Valio Ltd, tel. +358 50 398 7142, e-mail, Twitter @KimmoLuoma

Teea Björklund, Category Manager, Valio Ltd, tel. +358 50 384 2653, e-mail, Twitter @teeabjork