China Food

The new modern animal husbandry brand “three calves” is defining a functional dairy track!

From the middle-aged and the elderly to the young generation, they are paying more and more attention to health care, and are constantly supporting the huge market of functional food. According to the data of China Commercial Industry Research Institute, the scale of China’s functional food market will exceed 600billion yuan in 2022.

At present, on the whole, the long-term organic growth of functional foods will also depend on the contribution of high-frequency and just needed categories, and functional milk is showing its potential.

At the end of last year, focusing on the lack of fine cultivation of functional direction in the high-end milk market, modern animal husbandry established a functional milk brand “three calves” focusing on the consumer side, positioning the new benchmark of functional milk, taking high-quality cows and milk sources as the cornerstone, being the leader and innovator of medium and high-end functional milk, comprehensively meeting the diversified milk drinking needs of different consumer groups, and defining the functional milk track.

As a cutting-edge brand that has only been established for more than half a year, the achievements of the three Mavericks have been commendable. In the just past year’s big promotion 618, its total sales on JD platform exceeded 3.18 million, and the orders increased by 937% month on month.

So, what is the current growth of consumers’ functional demand? How did the three calves lay out functional milk? Now, let’s have a look.


In the report titled “insight into new trends of food and beverage in 2021” released by Ipsos, it summarized the emerging concepts emerging in the food and beverage market since the second half of 2020 into ten “plus” and “minus” in combination with consumer feedback, revealing the new consumption trends of food and beverage categories in terms of composition, emotion, packaging and marketing in the epidemic era.

In the description of component items, Ipsos put forward that under the new normal of health, functional needs become the primary concern. 62% of consumers believe that the content about the increase or decrease of ingredients in the food and beverage publicity can well meet their functional needs, and 61% of consumers believe that it is a very novel and unique promotion method to take the increase or decrease of ingredients as the selling point in the food and beverage publicity.

Focusing on the milk category, the unsatisfied functional demand has become the main obstacle for consumers to drink milk up to the standard.

The 2022 scientific milk drinking trend insight report (hereinafter referred to as “the report”) released by three calves and doctor clove pointed out that 63% of the respondents did not meet the recommended milk consumption standard of “300-500g milk per day”, and more than 40% of the respondents had unsatisfied functional requirements in milk drinking (lactose intolerance, easy to gain weight, and low nutrient content).

In addition to the price factor, the failure to meet the functional demand of lactose intolerance (26%) is the biggest obstacle for the respondents who do not meet the milk consumption standards to increase their milk consumption. Among the people with lactose intolerance, 60% will reduce the amount or frequency of milk consumption, affecting the standard of milk consumption.


The functional demand of milk category has not been paid much attention, and the emergence of three calf brands has filled this gap.

Generally speaking, functional dairy products in a broad sense refer to yoghurt, lactobacillus beverage, dairy products with additional functional ingredients and dairy products with fortified nutrients.

Different from the most common yogurt and lactic acid bacteria dairy products among consumers, the three calves took the lead in bringing the concept of functional milk into the field of normal temperature white milk, strengthened the supply of nutrients in high demand and met the needs of segmented people, and redefined functional milk with a powerful product matrix.

First of all, in view of the public’s demand for milk with higher protein and calcium, the three calves let more people drink better milk with a variety of fist products.

According to the report, 85% of the respondents pay attention to the supplement of protein in milk, and protein is the most concerned nutritional element; 84% of the respondents paid attention to the supplement of calcium in milk, and they had a general concern and demand basis for calcium in milk.

For the former, the three calves have a variety of products such as Holstein pure milk and DNA milk, which can respectively provide a higher level of raw protein supply and more precious A2- β Casein supplement. For the latter, Holstein high calcium milk has a 100ml formula containing 125mg high calcium level and vitamin D to promote calcium absorption.

Secondly, in view of the misunderstanding and prejudice of the small group on drinking milk, the three calves broke through one by one with personalized formulas, so that each sub group can also drink the right milk and love drinking milk.

30% milk is aimed at women who are more sensitive to fat absorption and sports fitness groups. It uses a healthy formula of 0 fat, 0 lactose and 0 sucrose to achieve “light” nutrition enjoyment.

The report shows that 17% of the respondents pay attention to the fat content in milk. Among them, the proportion of women buying skimmed milk is slightly higher than that of men, and the proportion of sports enthusiasts who drink milk heavily is significantly higher. They are the major consumers of milk.

Soft milk focuses on lactose intolerant groups. The innovative eht enzymatic hydrolysis technology enables better nutrition absorption. 0 lactose formula is also more suitable for the constitution of Chinese people.

According to the report, 26% of the respondents with low milk consumption said that they had lactose intolerance after drinking milk, and were prone to stomach discomfort, gastrointestinal discomfort and other symptoms. Among the respondents with symptoms of lactose intolerance, 60% would reduce the amount or frequency of drinking milk.

In fact, the direct choice to reduce the amount or frequency of drinking milk will further exacerbate the lack of milk intake. For people who are lactose intolerant, zero lactose milk is a practical alternative product. It not only removes lactose through technical means, reduces the stimulation of lactose to the intestines, but also increases the natural sweetness of milk.

Finally, the three calves are also committed to finding new milk demand and consumption scenarios with high growth potential, so that the milk can go out of the common breakfast scenario and the habitual thinking of nutrition supply, and cultivate new high-value consumer groups.

The 30 points before bedtime milk is added to the modern people who sleep late, hard to sleep and hard to sleep γ- GABA helps improve sleep quality.

At present, the problem of Chinese drinking milk is not only that the demand for drinking milk is less targeted, but also that the average daily milk consumption is insufficient. According to the 2021 China dairy quality report, China’s per capita dairy consumption in 2020 was 38.3kg, only 1/3 of the world average.

Therefore, in the process of communication, the three calves will also focus on delivering an information point based on the functions of their products, that is, “300g per day”, to continuously strengthen consumers’ awareness of the minimum recommended milk consumption, so as to promote scientific milk consumption and realize market education.

Both breadth and depth are emphasized. The product planning emphasizes the horizontal breadth and high matching degree of the population. In the operation of the industrial chain, the three calves pay attention to depth and manage all important links of production, namely, the construction of national pastures, the optimization of cow breeds, and the implementation of strict production standards.

As the parent company of the three calves, modern animal husbandry itself is a leading dairy farming enterprise in China, with 44 large-scale pastures and 340000 high-quality cows, with a daily fresh milk output of 6000 tons.

As for the selection of dairy cows, the three calves have distinct milk source ideas, and carefully selected three high-quality dairy varieties as the starting point for product layout, including Holstein cows, A2 genotype cows and Juan Shan cows. Among them, Holstein cows are recognized as high-quality lactating cows in the world, and A2 cows and juanshan cows are “very promising”.

In daily production, it has also adhered to extremely high standards for cattle feeding and testing for a long time. According to the brand, 214 welfare feeding standards for dairy cows can be described as all inclusive, from the temperature of the cowshed to the meal standard, from regular physical examination to “music spa”. There are 173 international standard tests for raw milk, including heavy metals, veterinary drug residues, microorganisms and other minor details.


In the well-known smile curve theory, the most valuable regions are concentrated at both ends of the value chain, namely, R & D and market. For enterprises, doing a good job in R & D and product construction is only half the success. Systematic market and brand building is the other half of the success.

As the three Mavericks who broke the game, their series of precise marketing activities also continued to push up their brand added value, which can be understood in terms of “three forces”.

In the product force field, three calves use the idea of explosive products to make products. The product layout of soft milk and 30 minutes before going to bed has filled the gap in the market and has shown the potential of explosive products.

According to the data provided by the brand, during the JD 618 promotion, the cumulative sales of soft milk exceeded 140000 bottles, with a sales growth rate of 171%. Through the “affinity Ambassador plan”, the repurchase rate increased by 20%.

At the same time, when the concept of meta universe is hot, the 30 minute product before going to bed also launched the first NFT collection jointly with Odin. The first batch of 2000 copies were sold out within 10 minutes, and the second batch of 8000 copies were sold out within 2 hours.

In the communication magnetic field, the marketing of consumer brands, especially milk brands, is seriously “convoluted”, which is different from the entertainment marketing behavior relying on celebrities, head big V, etc. the three calves pay more attention to the rigor and scientificity of communication, focus on the fine content and accident building that occupy the user’s mind, and have successively cooperated with doctor clove and JD health.

At present, the three calves and doctor clove have launched three joint initiatives of scientific milk drinking action, advocating that consumers drink milk in combination with functions, choose milk in combination with nutrition, and drink enough milk every day.

In terms of cooperation with JD health, during the 618 promotion, three Mavericks launched cross category joint marketing with Britax, a child safety seat brand, guanzhan, a Chinese new tonic brand, zuru, a toy brand, and Yan Xiaochu, a bird’s nest brand, achieving a 10 fold increase in the number of brand members.

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In the digital electric field, the three Mavericks face consumers directly from the brand with their D2c mode. Through the global marketing mode, on the basis of conforming to the diversified product layout of the three Mavericks, and under the touch of all media, all channels and all scenes, they can more accurately “link” the products with the target audience.

The brand is multi-channel in the public and private domains, focusing on user operation: in the public domain, taking 618 promotion as an example, the brand focuses on the three mainstream platforms of microblog, wechat and little red book to carry out content grass planting, achieving a year-on-year increase of 594% in the number of visitors outside the public domain, and 20million exposure of the double topic list.

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In the private domain, wechat app mall is equipped with dietitian customer service to answer the nutrition problems raised by consumers, and recommend and customize scientific milk drinking schemes according to their personal needs; The member community has customer service to carry out real-time interaction with users, timely collect user feedback, tap user needs, output brand stories, and open up a second battlefield after sales.

In recent years, with the upgrading of consumption, the continuous optimization of dairy product structure and the rapid development of technology, China’s dairy industry has developed rapidly. Euromonitor consulting data show that in 2020, the sales scale of dairy products in China has reached 638.5 billion, with an average annual compound growth rate of about 10% in recent 14 years. It is estimated that the market scale of dairy products in China will reach 810billion yuan in 2025.

In this traditional sense, it is defined as a big market where duopoly competes for supremacy. However, there are often “dark horses” in each segment of the circuit, which has the potential to break the situation. In the category of low-temperature yoghurt, the new consumer brand Jane Eyre took the first mover advantage by virtue of the concept of low-temperature yoghurt without additives. It took only three years, and the sales volume increased six times, from 300million to 2billion.

Indeed, regardless of the size of the market pattern, disruptive product innovation is always possible to redefine the segment track. So, how much transformation and innovation can the three calves define functional milk bring to the normal temperature white milk track? Let’s wait and see.

Pay attention to “snack generation” (wechat: foodinc) and reply to “modern animal husbandry” to see wonderful news.

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