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Chobani, Inc.
IndustryFood processing
FoundedNew Berlin, New York, USA (2005)
HeadquartersNorwich, New York, USA
Key peopleHamdi Ulukaya, founder & CEO
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Chobani, Inc.
IndustryFood processing
FoundedNew Berlin, New York, USA (2005)
HeadquartersNorwich, New York, USA
Key peopleHamdi Ulukaya, founder & CEO

Chobani is an American brand of Greek-style yogurt produced by Chobani Inc. Chobani is an Anglicized spelling of the Greek: τσομπάνης, Turkish: çoban, words derived from the Persian, meaning "shepherd" (literally he who carries a stick –-- something that shepherds traditionally do). The Persian word was adopted by the Ottoman Turks who, in turn, carried it throughout the Middle East and into the Balkan peninsula.

The company was founded in 2005 when Hamdi Ulukaya, a Turkish immigrant to the United States,[1] bought a plant in the town of New Berlin, New York, that was being closed by Kraft Foods. Ulukaya hired several of the former Kraft employees as well as a "yogurt master" and launched his brand in 2007.[2]


Chobani has been the beneficiary of the growth of Greek-type strained yogurt (known as "Greek" yogurt in the United States). Today, Chobani has over 1,200 employees and is the top-selling brand of yogurt in the country. [3]

In 2012, Chobani became an official sponsor of the US Olympic Team[4] and premiered their first national commercial during the 2012 Summer Olympics opening ceremony.[5]

On December 17, 2012 Chobani opened one of the world’s largest yogurt-processing plants in Twin Falls, Idaho. The one million square-foot facility cost $450 million and employs 300 people. Mr. Ulukaya said “The state expects the total economic impact of our business there to be $1.3 billion.”[6]

On September 3, 2013, Chobani pulled some of its Greek yogurt from supermarket shelves after hearing of "swelling or bloating" in cups. The company said it has investigated and found a type of mold commonly found in dairy that may be to blame.[7] Chobani officially announced it had moved to a voluntary recall on September 5, in cooperation with the FDA. [8] On September 9, the FDA reported at least 89 people have reported getting sick after eating the yogurt.[9]


On July 25, 2012 Chobani opened its first-ever yogurt bar in New York City’s SoHo neighborhood. The menu consists of various “creations” made with Chobani’s yogurt and all-natural ingredients. [10][11]

International Expansion[edit]

November 2011 marked the first international expansion for Chobani as their products were launched in New South Wales, Australia.[12] Mr. Ulukaya said, “We chose Australia as our first international market because we know that Australian consumers are passionate about food, and we hope they’ll love Chobani as much as our American fans do”. A Canadian launch followed shortly.[13] Chobani now sponsor the Australian Short Track Speed Skating Team, members include Ron and Lloyd. September 2012 saw Chobani’s introduction in the UK when their yogurt was carried in 200 Tesco stores.[14]


Chobani has been ordered to change their yogurt's labelling in England and Wales after a judge ruled it misled shoppers into thinking the yogurt was made in Greece.[15][16]


  1. ^ Pendleton, Devon (2012-09-14). "Hidden Chobani Billionaire Emerges as Greek Yogurt Soars". Bloomberg. Retrieved 2012-10-08. 
  2. ^ Prasso, Sheridan. "Chobani: The unlikely king of yogurt". CNN Money. Retrieved 13 July 2012. 
  3. ^ Business Insider: Trendy Greek Yogurt Chobani Is Officially The Top Selling Brand In America,
  4. ^ Elliott, Stuart (14 June 2012). "Anything-but-Ordinary Mom Pitches for Chobani Yogurt". The New York Times. Retrieved 13 July 2012. 
  5. ^ Bautista, Camille. "Chobani's first national TV ad to run during Olympic opening ceremonies". The Post-Standard. Retrieved 27 July 2012. 
  6. ^ Strom, Stephanie. "U.S. Hunger for Yogurt Leads to Gigantic Factory". New York Times. Retrieved 16 December 2012. 
  7. ^ "Chobani Pulls 'Fizzy,' 'Swelling' Yogurt Off Shelves". Retrieved 2013-11-07. 
  8. ^ "Chobani recalls some Greek yogurt cups". USA Today. Retrieved 20 September 2013. 
  9. ^ "Chobani Yogurt Linked to 89 Reports of Illness". ABC News. Retrieved 10 September 2013. 
  10. ^ "Chobani Yogurt Bar Makes Big Apple Debut". The Gourmet Retailer. Retrieved 30 July 2012. 
  11. ^ "Nothing But Good: Chobani Founder Hamdi Ulukaya Named Ernst & Young National Entrepreneur Of The Year® 2012 Overall Award Winner". Retrieved 18 November 2012. 
  12. ^ Paish, Matt. "Chobani hopes to bring U.S. Greek yoghurt boom to Australia". Australian Food News. Retrieved 10 November 2011. 
  13. ^ "Chobani, America's most loved yogurt, now in Canada". Canada NewsWire. Retrieved 16 November 2011. 
  14. ^ Cave, Andrew. "Chobani yoghurt launch may create 300 new jobs". The Telegraph. Retrieved 03 September 2012. 
  15. ^ Andrew Trotman "Chobani misled UK shoppers into thinking yoghurt was made in Greece: The US maker of Chobani yoghurt has been ordered to change the product's labelling in England and Wales after a judge ruled it was misleading shoppers," The Telegraph (28 March 2013).
  16. ^ Julia Glotz "Fage scores victory against Chobani in Greek yoghurt case," The Grocer (28 March 2013).

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