What Is Dairy? 8 Things to Know About Wholesale Dairy

Tamia Tutson
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    What is dairy? Dairy is any milk-related product made by a mammal that's sold for consumption. It's also a huge percentage of the wholesale products industry.

    Many entrepreneurs research wholesale items to sell when starting their venture. Why? Because it's an easy and affordable way to get bulk items. However, as of late many businesses have struggled to figure out where to buy certain wholesale goods, like produce wholesale. In this article, we’ll discuss the wholesale definition of dairy goods and where to buy them.

    Businesses such as bakeries, restaurants, and coffee shops depend on high-quality dairy products. Even so, it's easy to lose yourself in multiple wholesale websites claiming to be the best. Just because a particular wholesaler is popular, doesn’t mean they’re reputable. Nor does it mean that they’ll deliver on quality. Don’t worry, we’ll let you in on the best ways to tell the difference.

    If only there was a way to narrow down which B to B wholesale is right for your business. Luckily for you, there is. All it takes is acknowledging what elements you want in a distributor. In this article, we'll cover questions like "What is dairy?", how to run a wholesale business, how to run a wholesale distribution business for dairy, and how to engage in dairy supplier relationship management.

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    What Is Dairy In Regards to Wholesale?

    Dairy wholesale goods refers to milk products that are sold to buyers, which includes distributors, retailers, and consumers. Bulk dairy goods include cheese, butter, milk, cream, and yogurt. Most buyers don't produce these products themselves, and it’s more affordable than buying dairy products at a local market. Grocery stores like Walmart and Aldi also buy from wholesale suppliers.

    Wholesale dairy suppliers connect with companies who have a need for their products. While quality is always a concern for a business, worry is alleviated when buying from quality wholesalers. They monitor everything from animal control to storage temperature regulation. Ensuring all products are fresh every time.

    How to Choose the Best Wholesale Dairy Supplier

    As a restaurant manager, business owner, or entrepreneur, your success depends on the quality of products you provide. Cutting corners might save you money, but it compromises your brand and your customers’ needs.

    Any wholesale supplier you consider should place quality at the forefront of their message. Beyond that, there are other qualities to keep an eye out for. These include 3pl companies, pricing, customer service, and order management. The wholesale supplier you choose impacts your own product pricing and what you can sell.

    What to Consider When Choosing a Wholesale Dairy Supplier

    Because there are so many options for wholesale suppliers, especially when mulling over "What is dairy?", consider these factors before making a decision:

    Product Quality

    It's not uncommon for businesses to lead customers via empty promises. Many professionals who have already learned how to become a wholesaler may say their dairy is "farm fresh," but what you receive is clearly different. Because dairy products originate from animals on a farm, the quality can fluctuate. Seasonality, dairy farming conditions, and animal health contribute to the quality of dairy products.

    The best way to guarantee you get quality dairy products is through extensive research. Before making any decision look into how the animals are handled, where they're kept, farm conditions, and current or previous health issues. Once you know this, you can make an informed decision.


    Price is just as important a factor as quality; however, sometimes it's a factor that's out of your control. Similar to wholesale meat and wholesale seafood, wholesale price tends to fluctuate. Remember that you can negotiate pricing, too. The more dairy you buy, the more likely you are to receive a discount.

    Don't sacrifice product quality for a particular company just because they offer lower prices. You can find competitive pricing from a supplier with the same, if not better, quality.

    Customer Service

    Far too often we forget that customer service plays a huge part in the buying experience. Just because a company is popular and offers a quality product doesn't mean their customer service should be insufficient. Any wholesale distributor you work with should be readily available to answer your questions, provide solutions to common issues, or at the very minimum be there to help you figure out an issue.

    You’ll know a wholesale distributor provides good services by checking their online reviews. Don’t take the reviews lightly. Doing so will cause more trouble for yourself in the long run.

    Only connect with wholesalers who have good reputations, their wholesale license, and use a wholesale purchase agreement contract PDF with you. These are basic components of knowing how to manage a wholesale business. Arguing with suppliers isn't something you want to add to your already long list of to-dos.

    Order Management

    As of late, order management in the wholesale industry causes more issues than it solves. Usually, it takes hours to place a simple order and customers run into numerous issues along the way. Instead, order management should be as smooth and seamless as possible.

    When making a decision, consider your primary means of ordering. Regardless of whether you order by phone, tablet, or laptop, make sure your supplier provides an efficient way to do so.

    How to Find the Best Dairy Wholesale Distributor for You

    Among everything else, knowing how to find wholesalers is overwhelming. So, we've compiled tips to help you find the right dairy wholesaler, now that you already know the answer to the question, "What is dairy?"

    Contact Suppliers

    Before you dive into heavy research, try contacting local dairy suppliers first. Sometimes they allow you to purchase directly from them. However, most have a MOQ (minimum order quantity) So it's best not to work with them if you're unable to meet their minimum.

    Additionally, while you're in contact with a dairy supplier, ask them for a dairy wholesale directory. The supplier of your dairy products is always the best source of information. What a distributor can’t answer, a supplier can. The more you know the better!  

    Conduct Research Through a B2B Marketplace

    B2B marketplaces, like eBay and Alibaba, are the best places to find distributors. It's not common to find perishable goods like dairy wholesale products on Alibaba and eBay, so make sure you're looking up niche market directories that are relevant to your business. Although researching with B2B eCommerce is time-consuming, it provides great outcomes. You may even find that you’re able to provide a solution to another marketplace issue. Overall, your research provides answers like product fit, brand perceptions, customer service, and sales.

    On the other hand, if a B2B marketplace doesn't feel right for you, conduct a simple Google search. Use keywords like "dairy wholesale" or "dairy distributors" to get started. Keep in mind the more niche your market is, the more research you must commit to.

    Get a Sample

    Finally, once you settle on a distributor, don't be afraid to ask them for a sample of their product. This is the best way to test quality for yourself.

    Who Are the Best Wholesale Dairy Distributors?

    When searching for the best wholesale dairy distributors you'll want to expand your horizons. You might think the best distributors are local, but the opposite can sometimes be true.

    As someone looking for a wholesale dairy distributor, make sure to consider our tips. To help you out we've done some research for you. Here is a list of the best wholesale dairy distributors (based on our research):

    Oak Farms Dairy

    Oak Farms Dairy is a Houston Owned dairy distributor. They've been in business for over 20 years and have multiple distribution centers around the city. In recent years they’ve since expanded beyond Houston. Cities like Dallas, Austin, and even Wichita Falls now benefit from having a quality dairy supplier at their reach. Oak Farms promises that every product they sell is of the utmost quality. From farm to table, trust that you’re getting nothing but the best.

    The products generating most of their wholesale sales are fresh milk and dairy products. In addition, their farm distributes unique products such as eggs, flavored milk, whipped cream, ice cream, cottage cheese, and even flavored juice drinks.

    Baker's Golden Dairy

    As the only on-farm bottling plant in Columbiana County, Ohio, Baker's Golden Dairy provides fresh milk daily. Their goal is to provide their community with the freshest dairy product possible. More than this, they go above and beyond by providing scholarships to aspiring agriculture students.

    If that wasn't enough to draw you in, maybe knowing that they sell drinkable yogurt will! Their drinkable yogurt is a blend of milk and live cultures. It's then sweetened with sugar and flavoring. Baker's Golden drinkable yogurt makes a great addition to smoothies.

    Turner’s Dairy Farms, Inc

    Since 1930, Turner’s Dairy has made its name by producing the freshest tasting dairy in Pennsylvania. They work with over 20 dairy farms that house nothing but happy cows and sustainable farming practices.

    Even better, every product from Turner's Dairy is free from added hormones and chemicals. As a result, the shelf life of their products extends beyond the average shelf life of competitors. So not only do you get a quality product, but you get a product that lasts for what you paid. Turner’s farms has over 100 awards for taste and quality, you can see why people call them the best!

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    Frequently Asked Questions About What Is Dairy

    How Do You Choose the Right Dairy Wholesale Distributor?

    Use these tips to find the best dairy supplier:

    • Understand your industry's distribution channels: There are many ways products get from manufacturers to you. So, understanding your industry-specific distribution channels ensures you find the right supplier. Common suppliers include manufacturers (those who you buy from directly), exclusive distributors (companies that import and distribute products in certain countries, and regional distributors/wholesalers (regional wholesalers that sell to local wholesalers, who sell to small businesses).
    • Make a call: Speaking to a wholesale distributor directly gives you the opportunity to find out their minimum order requirements, wholesale unit prices, and what regions they supply.
    • Try samples: If you truly want to know if a product is fresh or not, try it yourself. Most suppliers will offer samples at their headquarters.

    What Products are Considered Dairy Wholesale?

    Milk, cheese, butter, ice cream, and yogurt all satisfy the question, "What is dairy?" They're all sold to grocery stores, restaurants, bakeries, and other wholesalers. Just remember that the answer to "Are eggs considered dairy?" is no.

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