Oatly Launches Vegan Philly-Style Cream Cheese

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Oatly, the world’s largest oat milk manufacturer, has announced the limited release of a new plant-based cream cheese.

Sweden-based Oatly says its new oat cream cheese innovation was spearheaded by the company’s Philadelphia-based food scientists, and the product is being made available exclusively in Philadelphia before it is released to the wider U.S. market later this year.

Philly-style oat cream cheese

“This cream cheese is an important step toward growing our portfolio of delicious plant-based products, and we want to first introduce it to the city it was invented in,” Leah Hoxie, SVP of Innovation at Oatly North America, said in a statement. She added that the cream cheese has “deep and authentic Philadelphia roots,” much like the popular cream cheese brand that bears the city’s name, which also recently released a dairy-free version of its iconic cream cheese.

Tara lipinski
Tara Lipinski, a Philly native, debuted the new Oatly cream cheese | Courtesy Walt Disney via Flickr

As part of the pre-launch release, Oatly has partnered with local Philadelphia bagel chains Spread Bagelry and Philly Bagels, who are now serving Oatly’s Philadelphia-invented cream cheese until March 31st or until supplies last. The ceremonial “first spread” was done by Olympic gold medalist figure skater, Tara Lipinski — a Philly native.

“We’re excited to partner with Oatly on the release of their cream cheese from Philadelphia,” said Brooks Tanner, COO at Spread Bagelry. “It’s rare and exciting to find a spread with such a true connection to this great city. Go birds.”

Real Philadelphians on Oatl’ys Philadelphia-invented Cream Cheese

City-focused launch

This is the first time Oatly has taken a limited pre-launch strategy in a particular city. The hope is that Philadelphians adopt Oatly’s cream cheese the same way they have adopted other hometown staples like greased street poles, Gritty, and the 2006 film Invincible.

Courtesy Canva

In addition, Oatly has released a random list of regional words and phrases to reinforce the company’s Philadelphia bonafides. These include hoagies, DELCO, jawn, K-o-P, youse, RIP HitchBOT, iggles, “there was traffic on the Schuylkill so we cut over to Kelly Drive and stopped for wooder ices,” and scrapple.

Oatly has been leading the plant-based dairy market, with its oat milk one of the most popular dairy alternatives in supermarkets and coffee shops.

Oatly’s use of oats has led the brand to innovate in the category including alternatives to milk, ice cream, yogurt, cooking creams, spreads, and on-the-go drinks, but this marks its foray into the dairy-free cheese category.

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