By Jon Rumley, Walmart Canada Corporate Affairs
Canadians want the cream of the crop at everyday low prices when they shop for dairy products at Walmart Canada. And if they can save money while supporting Canadian farmers, that’s really milking it.
That’s why Walmart Canada works with local suppliers like Amalgamated Dairies Limited (ADL) to bring high-quality dairy products, such as condensed and evaporated milk, to Walmart stores across Canada.
“In our values, we put our customer first,” said Walmart Canada senior category manager Ivo Petroff. “We want to deliver the customer an affordable, quality product.”
“We like to say we have a plant in every neighbourhood across P.E.I.,” said ADL CEO Chad Mann. “It’s a company that has grown over the past 70 years.”
Walmart Canada is proud to be part of that growth. ADL is one of the more than 2,200 Canadian suppliers that Walmart works with every day to help move Canada’s economy forward. Over the last 12 months, Walmart Canada has purchased more than $400 million worth of products from over 69 suppliers based in Atlantic Canada, including $49 million worth of products from five P.E.I. suppliers.
By working with smaller suppliers like ADL, Walmart Canada finds new and innovative ways to save money for the customer.
ADL is a perfect example of that. With around 14,000 cows, the co-op produces so much milk that 95% of production leaves the Island.
That’s where Walmart comes in. Where others see challenges, Walmart sees opportunities.
“We’re the best avenue for independent and small players on the market,” Petroff said.
In 2010, ADL began producing canned milk for Walmart Canada’s Great Value brand.
“Our relationship with Walmart allows us to do distribution from Newfoundland to B.C.,” Mann said. “Walmart has been a champion ever since. They have really grown that category.”
ADL created Dairy Isle in 2016 to sell its products off-Island under its own regional brand. In 2020, discussions with Walmart Canada provided ADL an opportunity to sell more of their products at a national level.
“The expertise and advice that Walmart has given us, as a small organization, has been critical,” Mann said. “A few small tweaks from their angle created a 100% improvement in the packaging of that product.”
But it’s not just about saving money for customers. It’s also about protecting Canadian jobs and resources.
“The Canadian people see the risk of farms disappearing, processing plants disappearing, food coming from somewhere else,” Mann said. “People understand what local means to them now.”
And it doesn’t get more local than supporting Canadian dairy farmers.