US yoghurt industry driven by increasingly health-conscious consumers

Press release   •   Apr 17, 2013 09:59 BST

The US yoghurt market is estimated to have reached a value of approximately $7.3 billion by the end of 2012, growing 6.6% from 2011.

Yoghurt as a product category has been one of the consumer staple industry's fastest-growing segment in recent years. Popular for decades in Europe (where the annual yoghurt consumption in some countries is about 70 pounds per person), yoghurt has newfound growth away from Europe as Americans, Canadians and those in the emerging markets have embraced this traditionally European food staple.

The US yoghurt market in particular has very favourable customer demographics, being primarily driven by 18-34-year-olds.

Health-conscious investments have been one of the best investing opportunities in recent years. With awareness about the dangers of unhealthy eating coming from doctors, advocacy groups, local governments, and even the White House, healthier eating is a thread that will remain with us for the extreme long term.

Increasingly health-conscious consumers are looking for food that is not only nutritious, low-fat and low-calorie, but also actually tastes good. Yoghurt certainly fulfils all four of those requirements.

As customers continue to make smarter eating decisions for themselves and their families, companies that sell healthier products, such as yoghurt, will be rewarded with those customers' long-term patronage and brand loyalty.

The US yoghurt market is primarily dominated by Yoplait (26.5%), Dannon (16.2%), Chobani (7.5%), and Breyers (5.8%).

Private label controls a large share of the market in refrigerated yoghurt, in aggregate ranking as the number two brand overall, with growth outpacing the market. In frozen yoghurt, private label ranks as the number one brand, although it is a far less important player in yoghurt drinks.

The restaurant and foodservice industry also is getting in on the action, with Chobani and Dannon opening up their own yoghurt shops, and yoghurt appearing on more restaurant menus.

With yoghurt growing in consumption across various day parts, and with the broad-ranging push for healthier eating and increased consumption of lean protein in the US, growth in the yoghurt category is hardly on its last legs.

Growth in the industry is expected to continue in the coming years, and will reach $9.3 billion by 2017.

For more information on the US yoghurt market, see the latest research: US Yoghurt Market

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