Located in residential areas, United Dairy Farmers locations differentiate themselves from the competition by offering sit-down ice-cream parlors and becoming part of the neighborhood. The company prefers that its stores not be viewed as grab-and-go stops along the highway and strives to give customers "an experience" rather than just selling gas and cigarettes. Many UDF stores are open 24 hours a day. The company’s 185 c-stores are designed to appeal to women, and cleanliness is a priority.

United Dairy Farmers began in 1938 when Carl H. Lindner Sr. started a small dairy in Norwood, Ohio. He began processing milk and other dairy products and selling them at a discount in a retail store.

The family's United Dairy Famers' ice cream became a local favorite, and the family opened more stores. By 1950, there were nine stores, and in 1958 a major plant expansion was completed. In the 1960s and 1970s, the stores were remodeled to add merchandising space for convenience-store products.

The company expanded to its present-day 185 stores in three states. The new superstores feature self-service gas islands, expanded ice-cream fountains and sit-down parlors. UDF’s Homemade Brand ice cream also is sold in grocery stores in at least 16 states.

Headquarters:Norwood, Ohio
No. of Stores:185
Average Store Size:2,500-4,000 sq. ft.
Rank Last Year:50
States of Operation: Indiana, Kentucky, Ohio
Family Business:Yes