Canstar Blue’s inaugural customer satisfaction ratings for ice cream brands saw 14 of New Zealand’s favourites go head to head. Three of them achieved top marks for overall satisfaction, including Oob Organic. So we caught up with a spokesperson from the company to discuss its success, which also saw the brand score a five-star review for taste.
Q) Taste is naturally the greatest driver of customer satisfaction when consumers buy ice cream. However, people also want their favourite brand to have a good variety and range of different flavours. Can you tell us about your range of ice creams and which are most popular in New Zealand? Perhaps you could tell us about any flavours in the pipeline?
A) At OOB we have mostly chosen the tried and true flavour range as sourcing organic ingredients for the more exotic flavours has not been easy. Our most popular flavours are the polarising ones, which consumers either love or don’t like at all (i.e. Peppermint Chip or Licorice).
One of our other most popular flavours is our Vanilla with flakes of chocolate. OOB ice cream is also defined as premium as we utilise a high fat content to deliver the super creaminess customers want from their ice cream. We do have some new flavours ready and waiting, however we have not yet decided which ones to release to the market. Organic Hokey Pokey is on the list. We have over 12 retail flavours, however it is difficult to obtain more than a few of these on the supermarket shelves. We do have at least 6 flavours at almost every New World, Countdown or Pack n Save.
Q) One in three adults told us they have a preference for low fat ice creams. Do you think there is a trend towards low fat ice cream products?
A) The trend has actually reversed in recent times back to high fat products. Recent health claims from low fat diets has been debunked and more and more consumers are demanding higher fat products, especially ice cream, as it is deemed a treat. This doesn’t necessarily mean high in sugar, but higher in good quality unadulterated ingredients such as organic milk and cream.
Q) Kiwis love ice cream but many aren’t too familiar with its ingredients – only 50% told us they read the ingredients before buying. Can you tell us about your basic ingredients and the process of making your ice cream?
A) OOB ingredients are mainly fresh from the farm organic milk and cream. We also use organic milk powder to increase the solids, ensuring a smooth and rich flavour. We use top quality chocolate from Belgium for all our chocolate based ice creams, and of course lots of organic fruit which we have plenty of, Organic Blueberries, Strawberries and Organic Mango. We also use raw organic sugar which gives a very subtle malty taste to all our range.
Q) New Zealand seems to have a great reputation around the world for producing quality confectionery, ice cream and dairy products. Is this your experience of the industry and what do you attribute it too?
A) In New Zealand we are great at growing grass, hence most of our pastures are full of dairy cows. Our climate enables us to produce excellent quality milk and also good volumes of milk. However, many other world producers produce dairy mainly from grain, and the taste profile is very different.
Whilst we find Asian markets love the Food safety aspects of New Zealand and our clean and green reputation, they still need to adjust to the flavour profile from our grass fed cows. As everyone knows Asia is fast becoming a large consumer of NZ dairy, so it won’t be long before they start demanding more value added dairy products like Ice Cream.