New friends, Cakes, Cocktails and the very cool Chobani Yoghurt Story

Thursday, February 21


So a few weeks ago, I met a gorgeous girl called Christine at a blogger meet up.  We got chatting and after the usual question of 'what do you blog about?', and me answering 'mainly health', she told me that she worked for a great yoghurt company who have recently launched in the UK.

I had actually tried this yoghurt before, that's a whole different story, but basically I'd loved it, and then couldn't remember the name of it.

Christine offered to send me some more to try, and six flavours of Chobani Yoghurt later, I was sold.



It tastes so creamy, you can't believe it's fat free. 


Christine invited me to join the fabulous Chobani team last night, together with Nuffnangx, a social blog stalking app, at their cocktails and cakes do, at the stunning 5 star Renaissance Hotel, in St Pancras.








Christine, myself and Cheryl-Lee




Loved the cocktails...


And then afterwards a few of us went for dinner at Shrimpy's..


Which is in an old filling station.



But new friends, cocktails, cake and delicious dinner aside, the Chobani yoghurt story, really is a cool one.

A company that began 5 years ago, now is the number one selling yoghurt in America, and moving into other countries.

The founder and CEO, Hamdi Ulukaya grew up in Turkey on his family's 3rd generation sheep farm and feta cheese operation.

In 1994 he moved to the US, to learn English and study business, leaving his family dairy business behind to seek his own path.  But whilst in the States, he couldn't help but notice a huge gap in the dairy industry between the US and Turkey.

He started Johnstown, N.Y. based Euphrates Feta in 2002, which soon became one of the most successful wholesale feta cheese companies in the country.

Three years later, he stumbled upon a classified ad on his desk, for a Central New York yoghurt plant that had recently been closed by Kraft.  After initially throwing the ad away as "there were a million reason snot to buy it," Ulukaya trusted his gut and fished it out the trash.  He went to see the plant that day, and decided to buy it on the spot.

It took 18 months to perfect the recipe for Chobani, and in October 2007 the first cups were in stores.

The yoghurt is made using an authentic straining process to create a yoghurt that offers twice the protein of regular yoghurt.  The ingredients are naturally sourced, fresh milk, real fruit and natural sweeteners. And it's fat free.

The company give 10% of it's annual profits to charity. How cool.

Dubbed "the Steve Jobs of yoghurt" by Forbes 2011, Ulukaya has built a business worth more than $1 billion in 5 years...

What recession?

If you live in the UK and what to get hold of some of this deliciousness yourselves, you can buy it at Tesco.

And if you live in the US, then you've probably already of it.

And if you life anywhere else, you will probably hear about it soon...
 
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