Do you swear by Kerrygold butter? You’re not alone as the Irish butter is now the second most popular butter sold in the US.
From baking up a batch of Irish soda bread or attempting a Martha Stewart recipe to adding a little dollop of Kerrygold to your morning coffee, Ireland’s favorite and most well-known butter brand Kerrygold is well and truly the darling of the US market.
In fact, Kerrygold is now the second most popular butter sold in the US, shifting a gigantic 23,000 tons of butter in 2017. That’s a massive amount for a butter that would once have been regarded as bad for you. Last year, Kerrygold came second in the US only to Land O’ Lakes, a US company founded here in the 1920s with a very large head start on the Irish product.
The regrowth in butter usage over the last number of years is with thanks to the realization that there is such a thing as healthy fats intake, as well as the particular qualities of Kerrygold butter, such as its grass-fed, all-natural, hormone-free roots, that have made it increasingly marketable in the US. And of course, the amazing taste heralded as supreme by US cooks and recipe sharers is enough to have you hooked once you give it that first shot in your mashed potatoes or in your baking.
It’s hard to believe that Kerrygold was launched in the US less than 20 years ago when you take into account the dedicated fanbase and users it has. They were finely displayed in Wisconsin in 2017 when residents went to extreme lengths to acquire the Irish butter after it was banned statewide.
The Badger State’s strict rules on dairy products prompted local outrage which saw a group of residents filing a lawsuit and one woman even driving all the way to Nebraska to stock up on the delicious golden bricks. The butter is still banned in the state although others have attempted to take advantage of Kerrygold’s success in the US by importing a different Irish butter and selling it there as “Irish Gold,” a move that quickly saw them hit with a lawsuit.
“It’s remarkable that something kind of exotic took off in this way,” Elaine Khosrova, the author of “Butter: A Rich History,” told Irish writer Siobhán Brett, who wrote extensively on the success of Kerrygold in the US for Eater.
“But you cannot underestimate the popularity of Irish culture in this country. Of course, if it didn’t taste good it wouldn’t do as well. The more-golden color I think also enhances the flavor [perception] for Americans, to some degree.
“Kerrygold has that essence, feeling artisanal, even if it isn’t. The romance of a place like Ireland also matters — green, rolling hills, beautiful cows, this image that’s pure.”
Article courtesy of Frances Mulraney. Irish Central.