It’s not Jameson, or Guinness, or potatoes. No, Kerrygold butter is Ireland’s top food export, passing annual sales of $1.12 billion and earning itself official commendation from Ireland’s Minister For Agriculture, Food & The Marine this week., the company announced. Kerrygold currently sells 7.5 million packages of its butter worldwide every week. It’s even the second top-selling brand of butter in the U.S., behind Land O’Lakes.
What’s the secret to its success? As anyone who buys it knows, shit is delicious. It has a higher butterfat content than most other grocery-store butters, making it richer and more milk-flavorful. It’s also more yellow in color, as you may have noticed, which comes from beta-carotene the cows consume. The milk used to make Kerrygold butter comes from grass-fed cows not treated with growth hormones, a fact important to some consumers. And finally, Kerrygold’s popularity dovetails with a trend toward full-fat foods, as the keto diet and bulletproof coffee evidence. Where margarine might have ruled as a bread spread decades ago, quality butter is now back in a big way. It’s all about the macros, bro.
All of this adds up to quite the year for Kerrygold, which has seen rising sales since it was founded in 1962. We at The Takeout are fully on board with rich, European-style butter—some of our favorites recipes even call for them specifically—and especially cultured butters, which have live bacteria added to them post-pasteurization, adding nutty and tangy depth. If you haven’t hipped to the Euro-style brick butter movement, you owe it to yourself to buy a block this week.