Fage (pronounced "fah-yeh") is the Greek god of yogurt. In Greece the company makes yogurt, cheese, refrigerated extended shelf life (ESL) and unrefrigerated ultra-high temperature (UHT) milk, cream, and dairy desserts such as pudding. It also makes yogurts, chocolate milk, and cheese snacks specifically marketed to children under the Junior brand. Fage is the #1 yogurt brand in Greece, with a more than 25% market share ( Vivartia is #2). In the US, where it's the fourth-largest yogurt brand, the company makes and distributes regular, low-fat, and non-fat yogurt under the FAGE Total brand. Its yogurt products are also distributed across Europe. Fage is owned by the founding Filippou family.
Greece is the company's primary market, where Fage sells its complete line of dairy products to about 20,000 stores. There it offers some 115 products marketed under 30 different brands, from Fruyo and Velvet yogurt to Farma milk and Yoko Choco Junior chocolate milk. Surprisingly, Fage doesn't make feta cheese anymore. Citing market saturation for the most well-known of Greek cheeses, it stopped producing feta in 2008. Fage does produce 10 different packaged cheeses, including edam, gouda, and its own plagia, a hard cheese used for frying. It also distributes fresh fruit juice made by European Milk and Flour Industries S.A. (EVGA), another company owned by the Filippou family.
The company operates three plants in Greece that make dairy products for the domestic market and yogurt for the international market. Outside Greece, its yogurt is distributed in more than 20 European countries (Italy and the UK are its largest markets) and a half-dozen Asian countries. Europe (including Greece) accounts for about 55% of overall sales.
The US is Fage's second-largest market, where it operates a 220,000-sq.-ft. factory in New York. Its FAGE Total brand yogurt is sold at supermarkets across the country, and the US accounts for about 45% of the company's overall sales. Greek-style yogurt has been gaining in popularity in the US for its richer taste and thicker texture than other yogurts. (It takes about four pounds of milk to produce one pound of Fage yogurt.) Greek-style yogurt is also touted by nutritionists for use in recipes to replace other higher-fat dairy products such as sour cream. The company sold 48,000 tons of yogurt in the US in 2011.
Fage was founded by Athanassios Filippou in 1926. Its ownership is now evenly split among his two sons, Ioannis and Kyriakos Filippou, who are on the company's board of directors but are not involved in the day-to-day management. In 2010 that responsibility was handed to their sons, who are both named Athanassios Filippou. – less