Tammie TamaraSection Editor
Do you know what M.O.O.M. is?
Most students on campus have similar reactions when hearing this question.
“M.O.O.M?” repeats senior Spanish major Teri Windschitl, her eyebrows raising at the term. “That sounds so funny!”
And what if you knew that it was a carbonated soft drink containing calcium, made right here in SDSU’s Dairy Bar?
“I would try it,” Windschitl decides without hesitation. “It’s just something different, other than having pop. And if you don’t like milk, this is a great idea.”
M.O.O.M.’s inventor is Bruce G. Schroder, president and CEO of the Sioux Falls research firm Dairilean, Inc. He spent his freshman year of college at SDSU before moving on to Iowa State for his bachelor’s and master’s and to Illinois for his doctorate.
Currently, the only flavor the drink comes in is orange, and it tastes just like regular orange pop. M.O.O.M. stands for “Made Out of Milk.”
“I drink it myself, about a bottle a day or every other day,” Schroder said. “We’re always testing and sampling stuff all the time.”
A new citrus flavor will be coming out early in 2003, to be followed by a red flavor along the lines of fruit or punch.
Though M.O.O.M. hit stores only this summer, Schroder’s work with a milk-pop extends back several years. He has rented space for private research at SDSU since 1980, and he began working on the concepts for the product in 1990.
As a child, he liked to create.
“I knew I was going to do something in the area of new stuff, inventions,” he said. “I always tinkered around and made things.”
His invention is now providing a way for kids, and adults too, to get nutritional value out of a carbonated beverage.
“We’ve got several generations of young people that grew up with a shortage of calcium,” he said.
Since soft drinks have become part of our culture, he knew the answer to increasing health lay outside the realm of pushing regular dairy products.
“Kids aren’t going to stop drinking soft drinks,” he said.
His patented process puts the calcium and minerals from milk into a soft drink. He got his first grant from the National Institute of Health in 1999 to “get the process to work.”
He is now in the second year of his second grant, which focuses on producing the commercial product. M.O.O.M. is made on campus and bottled in Huron.
M.O.O.M.’s General Manager Nolan Wolkow said about one third of the product is made up of actual milk products.
“It’s everything but the fat and protein. The white stuff you usually see in milk is gone.”
Both Schroder and Wolkow are pleased with how sales are going.
“I think we’ve had a very positive reaction to the product,” Schroder said.
Of course, they are still working hard to get the message out, giving out free samples in stores and presenting educational programs with Sioux Valley Hospital.
And though the product is designed for kids, other people are drinking it as well–moms, dads and people who care about their health in general. Each 11-ounce bottle contains 10 percent of the adult daily recommended amount of calcium.
M.O.O.M. is featured in grocery stores across Eastern South Dakota, and a couple different places in Brookings. The SDSU Dairy Bar carries the product, and the Brookings High School has its own M.O.O.M. vending machine. The drink has also spread to include one spot in North Dakota and one in Minnesota.
Future plans, in addition to the release of new flavors, include making the product better known throughout the Midwest. “By the end of the year we want to pick up another distributor and get into the regional thing,” Wolkow said.
South Dakota is already becoming famous for its dairy-pop drink: M.O.O.M. was featured in the October issue of BeverageWorld. For more information on Schroder’s invention, visit www.drinkmoom.com.
#1.887715:846611338.jpg:moom.jpg:Made Out of Milk, the orange pop named M.O.O.M. will debut next year in citrus and likely punch flavors. Bruce G. Schroder, M.O.O.M. inventor, attended SDSU in his freshman year before attending schools in Iowa and Illinois. M.O.O.M. is sold at the SDSU Dairy Bar. :