In a bid to go plastic-free and to satisfy nostalgia for simpler times, millennials are using milk vans to get their dairy fix.
Milkmen delivering milk, cream and butter from local dairies and creameries for the household was one of the more charming daily routines of the 1950s and ‘60s.
But like most ‘cool things,’ milkmen fell out of favor when it became more convenient and less expensive to buy milk at the grocery store.
However, as many Millenials shift to more sustainable ways of living, avoiding unnecessary plastic and waste, Milkmen and Milkwomen are making a comeback as glass bottles surge in popularity.
And more people are willing to pay a little more for this service if it’s a better bid to help the environment.
Dairies in London revealed that there’s been a surge in interest since 2018 as more youngsters become concerned with excess waste.
UK-wide company Milk&More and east London dairy Parker Dairies have seen increased demand for glass bottles as younger families are willing to pay more for the service than an average carton of milk at the supermarket.
With more than a 25 percent increase in sales– figures estimate that doorstep deliveries make up 3 percent of all milk sales in the UK, which is around 1 million pints daily.
Paul Lough, depot manager at Parker Dairies, thinks this interest in glass bottles is “absolutely phenomenal.”
In less than a year, Paul revealed that the service attracted 382 new customers, and out of these new calls, 95 percent are already getting glass bottles.
“People are much more environmentally conscious, and so they are asking if we do glass.”
Since glass milk bottles can be reused 25 times before they’re recycled into new bottles, it’s a convenient way to decrease waste.
What’s more, the milk tastes even better when it comes from a cold glass bottle.
Meanwhile, a fellow company Milk&More reported that it recently gained more than 2,500 customers in just one month, and 90 percent of these consumers are requesting the iconic glass bottles.
Patrick Müller, managing director of Milk&More, said:
“The glass bottle is an exciting product… We think that it has a future.”
Milkmen are no longer a thing of the past.
“We believe the tradition of the milkman has some fantastic elements that are relevant now. They are a reliable presence for pre-breakfast delivery, they offer an exciting product range including locally sourced produce, and can be a part of the community.”
“We just have to make them relevant for the modern consumer.”
Milkmen are also learning about other necessities their customers need and want. They’re delivering artisanal food items, like bread and local honey, all before breakfast.
It turns out, sometimes those old-fashioned ways are better.