Kroger grocery stores and Starbucks coffee shops are converting to milk from cows that have not received recombinant bovine somatotropin.
Kroger will complete the transition of all its store-brand milk to a certified rBST-free supply by Feb. 2008. The company based the decision on customer feedback and the growing number of dairy farmers who have started to offer certification.
Earlier this year, Kroger converted store-brand milk that it sells in the western half of the United States to a certified rBST-free supply. The changeover includes milk at City Market, Dillons, Fry's, Food 4 Less, Fred Meyer, King Soopers, QFC, Ralphs, Smith's, and Kroger banner stores in Louisiana and Texas. By Feb. 2008, milk at Kroger banner stores throughout the Midwest and Southeast will be certified rBST-free.
In January of this year, Starbucks also began working with its local dairy suppliers toward a goal for its U.S. stores to eliminate dairy products from cows that have received growth hormones.
As of May, more than half the dairy products that Starbucks bought for U.S. stores originated from cows that did not receive growth hormones. The products include milk, half-and-half, whipping cream, and eggnog—available at some stores in 22 states and Washington, D.C.