Canstar Blue’s fresh reduced fat & skim milk review has seen Pauls, Coles, Woolworths and Dairy Farmers compared on their taste, packaging design, value for money and overall satisfaction.
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* Overall satisfaction is an individual rating and not a combined total of all ratings. By default, brands with equal overall satisfaction ratings are sorted by the mean overall satisfaction score as rated by consumers. You can click the arrows at the top of any column in the table to sort by the results in that column. Canstar Blue research finalised in February 2020, published in March 2020.
Pauls has been rated best in our inaugural fresh reduced fat and skim milk review. It got five stars on taste, packaging and overall customer satisfaction. It got four stars for value for money.
Here’s the skinny: Pauls rated best for skim milk
Losing a couple of kilos, or maintaining a healthy diet, doesn’t always mean weighing up a slice of pizza or a bowl of salad on Friday night. Even drinking a glass of milk made with less fat can make a big difference. Typically labelled as ‘fat free’, skim milk is often seen as the healthier alternative to full cream fresh milk. In fact, making skim milk involves taking out a large portion of the milk fat that’s generally left untouched when creating regular whole milk. Unfortunately, skim milk has attracted some criticism over the years. If you read the fine print on the back of your bottle, there’s a good chance it’ll say there’s actually still some fat – it’s just much less compared to your low fat or full cream options. That’s because the Food Standards Code allows skim milk to have up to 0.15% fat and requires at least 3% protein.
To help you during your next shop, we asked more than 500 Aussie shoppers for their feedback on the fresh reduced fat and skim milk they have bought and consumed from a supermarket or grocer within the last three months. Respondents rated brands on their taste, packaging design, value for money and overall satisfaction. Those which met the minimum required survey sample size of 30 responses are featured in our results.
In our first ever skim milk review, Pauls was rated cream of the crop. It was the only brand to earn a five-star rating for overall satisfaction, as well as for taste and packaging design.
Best Reduced Fat & Skim Milk
Here are the best reduced fat and skim milk brands in Australia, as rated by consumers in Canstar Blue’s inaugural review:
In our first ever reduced fat and skim milk review, Pauls came out on top after dominating the ratings in three out of four categories surveyed. The Coles and Woolworths home brand ranges similarly managed to achieve full marks in the value for money stakes, but landed on four stars for overall satisfaction, while Dairy Farmers bottomed out on three stars.
What to consider when shopping for skim milk
What makes you moo-ve along to the next bottle of skim milk on the shelf? Analysis of our research reveals that taste is the biggest driver of customer satisfaction by a large portion (58%), followed by value for money (29%) and packaging design (12%). Here are a couple of factors you might want to consider on your next shop.
While skim milk isn’t necessarily known for having the same rich, creamy, velvety smooth taste as a glass of full cream milk, that doesn’t mean you can’t enjoy your daily dose of calcium. After all, taste definitely makes a difference when you’re drinking nice, fresh milk on its own, just like nearly one in three (28%) of our survey respondents do. Additionally, 14% say they prefer to buy milk products with certain ingredients or nutritional value.
If you’re big on taste, and let’s be honest who isn’t, then you might appreciate a bottle of Pauls. The manufacturer ranked best for taste in our inaugural review, receiving the only five-star rating given for the category. Coles followed closely behind on four stars, while Woolworths and Dairy Farmers trailed behind on three stars.
Value for money
Who doesn’t want to get bang for their buck? A fifth of Aussies we surveyed (19%) say they usually buy the cheapest brand of milk available, and purchase bulk during their regular shop (20%). A few extra dollars can certainly add up and it doesn’t help if you’re never able to finish everything before it goes off like 16% of our respondents admit.
Although there’s something plenty of Aussies can definitely agree on when it comes to price. A whopping 56% of people believe supermarkets should do more to help Australian dairy farmers, and nearly two-fifths (36%) are willing to pay more for supermarket private label milk if a portion of the money goes back to farmers.
Coles just nipped into the top spot when judged on value for money, with only a small fraction separating the supermarket giant and rival Woolies. Both supermarkets achieved full marks, placing ahead of Pauls and Dairy Farmers on four and three stars respectively.
Half of our Aussie respondents (53%) grab the same brand of milk each time, but sometimes there’s a bottle that makes you question if there is such a thing as greener pastures (at least when it comes to milk). Even the smallest details like design can make a difference.
Pauls dominated the packaging design category on five stars, ahead of Coles and Dairy Farmers on four stars. The Woolies home brand rounded out the results on three stars.
About the Winner – Pauls
Pauls isn’t only just one of Australia’s favourite dairy brands, but it’s also king in our first ever fresh reduced fat and skim milk review! For more than 80 years, the manufacturer has been churning out different types of milk (including flavoured milk) as well as custards, yoghurts, creams, desserts and sour creams. They’ve also been busy providing continuous support to many Aussie farming families.
For strong bones, Pauls claims its PhysiCAL range has 40% more calcium than regular milk and contains vitamin D to help calcium absorption. Plus, it apparently only takes two glasses two get your daily dairy intake. The 100% Australian-made milk comes in 1L and 2L bottles. A lactose-free and gluten-free option is also available with Pauls’ Zymil line, which is sold in 1L cartons.
There’s also Pauls Skinny Milk for those who want to maintain their healthy diet. The product supposedly reduces cholesterol levels and offers a source of protein. The skim milk is said to be permeate free and low GI. These are available in 1L and 2L bottles.
About the author of this page
This report was written by Canstar Blue’s home & lifestyle journalist, Tahnee-Jae Lopez-Vito. She’s an expert on household appliances, grooming products and all things grocery and shopping. In addition to translating our expert research into consumer-friendly ratings reports, Tahnee spends her time helping consumers make better-informed purchase decisions on all manner of consumer goods and services, while highlighting the best deals and anything you need to be aware of.
Canstar Blue surveyed more than 3,000 Australian adults across a range of categories to measure and track customer satisfaction, via ISO 26362 accredited research panels managed by Qualtrics. The outcomes reported are the results from customers within the survey group who have purchased (from a supermarket or grocer) and consumed fresh reduced fat or skim milk within the last three months – in this case, 509 people.
Brands must have received at least 30 responses to be included. Results are comparative and it should be noted that brands receiving three stars have still achieved a satisfaction measure of at least six out of 10. Not all brands available in the market have been compared in this survey. The ratings table is first sorted by star ratings and then by mean overall satisfaction. A rated brand may receive a ‘N/A’ (Not Applicable) rating if it does not receive the minimum number of responses for that criteria.