The Milo drink or Milo chocolate powder, is a worldwide fan-favorite leading chocolate malt beverage produced by Nestle. It is dubbed to have “the goodness of Milk Malt and Cocoa”, a ready to go drink with a nice amount of vitamins and minerals. This drink can be drunk iced or as a hot milo drink, whipped into more extravagant beverages like the Milo Dinosaur, to other dishes like ice cream, jelly desserts, baked goods, or adult cocktails. This sweet and ‘healthy’ drink is beloved by kids and adults alike.
A short Introduction
Milo is a powdered beverage known to be produced by Nestlé, while it was produced by the company it was originally created in 1934 by Thomas Mayne, an Australian chemist from New South Wales, who worked with Nestlé. This product launched at the Sydney Royal Easter show. The Australian Milo drink was made by combining malt extract from malted barley, cocoa, sugar, mineral salts, full cream milk powder, Vitamins A, B1, D, and iron. Introduced as a fortified tonic or food-drink served hot or cold for children to receive their daily required nutrients to complete a balanced diet. It was a hit to the masses which progressed to Nestlé deciding to produce it commercially, giving it the name ‘Milo’ from the Olympic Wrestler “Milon” of Croton, who was known for his legendary strength, and wrapped it up in the iconic green colored packaging we are all familiar with today.
It expanded around the world in 1950, being served with morning breakfasts to children. In 2015, it launched an option for ready to drink tetra packs especially for kids to consume after school or at practice. It has been a worldwide sensation since 2021, where its been distributed around 50 countries, with 3.7 million servings enjoyed each day. Though the product taste did differ quite a bit depending on the country due to logistic limitations, for example Japan imports its ingredients from Singapore to produce this iconic drink. In Australia they released ‘Milo-B Smart’ in 2008, it had finer powder, and additional Iodine and Vitamin B, it tasted a bit different from the original formula, and was discontinued in 2021. Another version came from 2017, where Milo Philippines developed a ‘protomalt’ formulation, created with carbohydrates coming from cassava and barley. As of 2021, Nestle has also created a plant-based version made of soy and almond milk, but still kept the cocoa and malt percentage which you can get depending on where you are.
A popular drink enjoyed by millions of people around the globe daily. It has now developed into a range of beverages and snacks, that like the drink can also differ from country to country. The more well known list of products developed so far are the:
- Milo Champion formula or the Chocolate Malt drink powder, chocolate powder made for kids to teens.
- Milo ready to drink chocolate milk drink, a ready to go liquid form packed in tetra packs. You can see kids usually have a sip of this during lunch break.
- Milo Active Go nutritional energy drink, the canned ready to drink out of the fridge version of the usual tetra pack more suited for adults.
- Zero added table sugar, a specific drink catered to teens, or health conscious adults who still love their daily treat of malt beverage, it still tastes rich even if it’s made with less sugar.
- Plant based energy powder, a delicious alternative to the classic chocolate malt flavor.
- Whole grain breakfast cereals, while milk is usually one way to start your day, this breakfast cereal is more filling, helping kids start their ‘champion journey’.
- For on the go snacks they have the Milo energy cubes, snack bars, and cereal bars. With a longer list of products that are sure to come.
A popular brand through Asia, Africa, Australasia, and Latin America, you can find them being sold or even used everywhere from grocery stores to small street stalls, being added to shakes and smoothies, alcoholic beverages, pastries, and more.
Milo drink benefits
Is the Milo drink healthy? Is the Milo drink good for weight loss? These are some of the many questions we wonder when we take a sip of this nostalgic beverage. While it absolutely can be a great pick me up in the afternoon, Milo calories count to around 124 for each serving of 200ml. Some Milo drink nutrition facts are that it has a total fat of 3.4 grams, has a mix of vitamin A, B-6, and C, calcium, iron, riboflavin, niacin, protein, and sodium. Here are some of the good and bad this chocolate malt drink has in store for you:
- Rich in calcium that helps strengthen bones and teeth. Some studies have confirmed that kids who do drink the milk beverage daily have higher calcium level than those who don’t.
- A tasty energy drink that gives you enough carbohydrates, electrolytes and hydration to keep you going for the day.
- Has a nice amount of protein and Vitamin B6 and B12 for muscle and cell repair, and protects the body against anemia.
- A serving fulfills the iron requirement of the day, it increases blood production that helps immunity and gastrointestinal processes.
* Though Milo used to be the ‘go to breakfast for champions’ one should consider the amount of sugar the product has, and how much energy it actually gives you as an adult. Too much may increase blood sugar levels and may give you diabetes, it also has a small amount of caffeine, and can make you gain weight.
A drink for teen and adult Filipinos
Brought to the Philippines in 1964, had marathons and summer sport clinics (classes) like basketball, swimming, and other 21 more sports,creating small school wide competitions since 1988, to help spread the word of this sweet malt drink. By 1991, it even became the official drink in the 30th sea games that was held in the Philippines. It even became more beloved as this brand helped jumpstart many sportsmen and sportswomen dreams by providing shoes and many opportunities, such an example is Mary Joy Tabal, a 6-time National Milo marathoner who was able to qualify in the Olympics, and many more children and teens signing up for online training sessions with Milo.
- Milo dinosaur, the best and simplest Milo drink recipe, a cup of iced or shake made of the malt powder, sprinkled with more powder on top as decor.
- Milo Godzilla, a cold cup of the classic drink with ice cream on top, garnished with whipped cream or other sweets.
- Milo Puto, the traditional rice cake from the Philippines made modern and sweet with a touch of this popular milk powder.
- Milo Jelly Tapioca, the ultimate chocolate-y summer refresher made of milo flavored jelly, condensed milk, tapioca pearls, water and many more.
- Milo pancakes are quick, simple and delicious, all you need is a batter made of ingredients you can easily find at home, a few minutes in the pan, and it’s ready to be enjoyed.
- Steamed Milo Cake, a snack kids and their friends will love, just a quick mix of cake batter with powdered malt, no need for an oven, just a pan or steamer, a little frosting and it’s sure to please the crowd.
The Nestle Milo drink is popularly used not only to be enjoyed at home, they are found being served in street stalls, fast food restaurants like Mcdonald’s and KFC in some parts of Asia, or the Cha chaan teng diners in Hong Kong as ‘Iced milo’, small stalls inside the mall sell milo flavored ice cream served in a cone or cup, in cafes they turn these into syrup drizled over shaved ice, or made into the typical ice candy sold around the neighborhood in the Philippines, some use these as an added ingredient for cakes like the Malaysian Batik cake, made into jam and other delicious desserts. A childhood treat that even as an adult, you’ll still love.