business

Milo sales suspended for winter after demand surge causes shortage

33 Comments
By SoraNews24

Japan is no stranger to certain food shortages from time to time. Lapses in the butter supply seem to occur on a somewhat regular basis, but our current lack of the product Milo is sure to hit the sweet-teeth of Japan especially hard.

Milo is a blend of chocolate and malt fortified with nutrients, that mixes with hot or cold milk or water, comparable to Ovaltine in the western hemisphere. It’s especially loved in Japan, where its customer base has recently expanded more deeply into the adult demographic, thanks to recent social media buzz purporting its health benefits.

In fact, it was so successful that in September of this year, dealers and wholesalers ran out of the standard Milo Original 240-gram bags. Nestlé replenished the supply by mid-November, but ravenous, Milo-deprived milk-drinkers quickly consumed it, with estimates of Milo-demand up 700 percent from the previous year.

Now, Nestlé has had to announce that supply of Milo Original 700-gram and 240-gram bags as well as the Milo Original Stick Five-Packs will be suspended for the entire winter.

In other words, it’s all gone. We drank it all…

Nestlé says that the problem is securing more raw materials from Singapore to produce enough Milo. They expect production to be back in full swing sometime after March of 2021.

With news of such an insanely popular product going off the market for a long time, Japan’s notorious resellers have sprung into action, clearing remaining supplies from store shelves.

Flea market websites such as Mercari have also begun filling up with packs of Milo asking for increasingly exorbitant prices. As we journey deeper into the Milo-less winter, these prices will no doubt continue to rise leaving many without their daily fix of chocolate and malt.

Photo-2020-12-09-12-47-10-e1607490167527.jpg

Netizens are lamenting both not being able to drink Milo and/or not having been able to buy some themselves and turn a quick profit.

“I should have bought some…”

“My supermarket is completely out.”

“That was my daily treat…”

“How did it get so popular all of a sudden?”

“Wow. It’s delicious and good for you?”

“I’ve drunk it since I was a kid, but now it’s in the filthy hands of resellers.”

“I think Milo has become a unit of currency on Mercari.”

“The same fate awaits the Pizza Potato resellers.”

Although, many people would rather forget that dark period in Japanese history, the great Pizza Potato potato chip shortage of 2017 did end on a rather happy note. However, their producer Calbee issued a surprise announcement that production had resumed and almost instantly shelves were lined again. This turned the tables on resellers who were suddenly left with cases upon cases of Pizza Potato that they could no longer even sell at retail.

Nestlé certainly has the muscle to make such a thing happen too. So take heart, Milo fans in Japan. It will be a long hard winter, but Mercari may very well end up full of discounted brown powder before long.

Sources: Oricon News, Hachima Kiko

Read more stories from SoraNews24.

-- Flour products sell online for outrageous prices in Japan as demand for them skyrockets

-- Butter Crisis ’14: Supermarkets nationwide apologize for empty shelves, cakes threatened

-- Japanese figure fan gives the Venus de Milo a ferocious combat makeover 【Photos】

© SoraNews24

©2021 GPlusMedia Inc.

33 Comments
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I must be living under a rock. Three decades here but I can't say I've ever seen Milo in the supermarkets. How about you guys?

1 ( +10 / -9 )

Me too, I've never heard of it or seen it anywhere. Am I out of touch?

-1 ( +8 / -9 )

@tamanegi - I have seen Milo at supermarkets. However, I can't recall it ever being popular.

4 ( +6 / -2 )

You can buy it in pretty much any large supermarket in Japan.

3 ( +7 / -4 )

I had seen it but never tried it because I did not know if it was Miro or Milo. My friend had a dog named Milo but it was pronounced MyLow

-3 ( +0 / -3 )

Milo is a blend of chocolate and malt fortified with nutrients, that mixes with hot or cold milk

It is also full of sugar...

17 ( +17 / -0 )

Another fine Aussie invention! Always great in hot milk or on ice cream!

thanks to recent social media buzz purporting its health benefits.

Dubious, at best. But yummy!

10 ( +10 / -0 )

It’s an Aussie product but the stuff you get over here is slightly different. I like the Aussie stuff better, made with half milo and half milk. It has pictures of people playing sports on the packet

6 ( +6 / -0 )

This story sounds like a load of old Horlicks to me.

8 ( +8 / -0 )

Seen it, prefer ovaltine myself, always bring back 5 or 6 kilos every time I visit another country. I call it my mercy package. Milo just does not do it for me, each to their own. Choice would be nice?

4 ( +4 / -0 )

What business suspends sales due to surge anyway? If anything sell more.

Oh no, ! my product is too popular? I have to stop selling it?

so stupid.

5 ( +7 / -2 )

I have never seen Milo in Japan.

0 ( +2 / -2 )

I bet if it was healthy the shelves would be full to the ceiling. lol

4 ( +4 / -0 )

There's something nice and comforting about a hot mug of Milo or Ovaltine on a cold winter day. I'm always amused when I see Ovaltine on the shelves of stores in Thailand and Vietnam.

1 ( +2 / -1 )

As with many other commenters above, I seriously had never even noticed Milo on supermarket shelves in the decade that I previously lived here. I did immediately notice it after moving to China, though, where it is practically everywhere. Anyways definitely not going to miss it this winter as I prefer black coffee and unsweetened tea.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

I have seen it on shelves, just another product I dub slow poison, why on earth Japanese get hung up all the stupid FAD foods is is beyond me.

And saying its good for you.....that is the LAST thing this stuff is LOL, too funny!!!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

WTF!!! Crazy chocolate and malt addicts!

4 ( +4 / -0 )

Import from Thailand

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Can you put it in beer?

2 ( +3 / -1 )

I must be living under a rock. Three decades here but I can't say I've ever seen Milo in the supermarkets. How about you guys?

Me neither. I can't say I've noticed, although I've never actively gone on a search for it. I'd rather just buy some cocoa powder and add a healthier sweetener.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Yes, as a kid, it was Horlicks for me. Until I realized how sugar can rot your teeth (and it did!). Wish I knew this as a young child.

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Extremely popular in Thailand, where I used to drink it all the time, but, like everyone else, I don't remember ever seeing it here!

2 ( +2 / -0 )

Oh, come on, let's be fair...whoever could have seen a demand for a traditional winter comfort product being in demand in December 2020?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Used to buy Milo from my local supa in Osaka and drink it like it was going out of fashion...until I started packing on the kilos. To paraphrase Troy McClure, it's a bit like lead paint: delicious but deadly.

The Milo in Japan is a bit different to the Aussie stuff, and dissolves faster (are Japanese more impatient?).

2 ( +2 / -0 )

@Tamanegi

I must be living under a rock. Three decades here but I can't say I've ever seen Milo in the supermarkets.

I see Milo all the time in Izumiya. It typically just sits there and no one buys it but me. I didn't even know there was a shortage. I have like 3 bags under my sink.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Now that I know it's like Ovaltine, I think I'll give it a try when it returns to the shelves.

I'll bet it's delicious if you throw it in a blender with some milk, and ice cream or a frozen banana.

5 ( +5 / -0 )

Grew up with both Milo and Ovaltine on milk

2 ( +2 / -0 )

This latest craze is among women and something to do with Milo being fortified with minerals like iron. All you need is a few "influencer" types to say its amazing and curiosity and FOMO will take over.

There are other ways to get iron, but sweet warm milky things are bound to appeal at this time of year.

0 ( +0 / -0 )

It’s especially loved in Japan, where its customer base has recently expanded more deeply into the adult demographic, thanks to recent social media buzz purporting its health benefits.

You've got to be kidding. The average Taro san has never heard of it.

3 ( +3 / -0 )

Whenever a food is not selling well, all of a sudden it's a fad, then it gets sold and the company tells us they can't cope with the surge in demand.

Happened to natto and bananas some time ago

0 ( +0 / -0 )

"Milo Crisis 2020"..

Hahahahaaaaaa!!!!..

0 ( +0 / -0 )

Milo, Ovaltine and Horlicks were all pretty much drinks for kids when I was coming up. Discovered beer and that was that; haven't drunk any of those since the 1970s. Not interested at all now.

1 ( +1 / -0 )

Milo is a blend of chocolate and malt fortified with nutrients, that mixes with hot or cold milk or water, comparable to Ovaltine in the Western Hemisphere

Ovaltine? Do they just make this stuff up to suit themselves?

3 ( +3 / -0 )

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