What to watch in Yoghurt
Posted by Rachel Cox on May 28, 2012
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The very landscape of the yoghurt market has changed dramatically over recent years. As with many FMCG categories change happens fast and there have been a number of macro trends such as increased consumer savviness around health and the introduction of indulgence to the category which have acted as a catalyst to change. Two key things have happened as a result:
1) The yoghurt market is now highly saturated with own label brands flooding the aisles. The danger is that this low margin, high volume space will become completely saturated and isn’t sustainable in the long term.
2) In a bid to stand out there have been interesting innovations emerging, some of which have pushed the boundaries of the category, carving out new user occasions, such as: DANONE, whose Activia brand opened up the doors to breakfast occasions with pouring yoghurt; or brands like MOMA who have clearly staked out their hold on the “on the go” breakfast territory.
So it stands to reason that after nearly 50 years of yoghurt making even brands such as Muller, Danone and General Mills are continuing to reinvent, innovate and expland their product ranges in the fight for market share. General Mill’s Yoplait, a category leader in France and the US which previously enjoyed a large share of the yoghurt market in the UK nowadays loses out despite several interesting product launches such as Perle Du Lait, Petits Filous Rice, Frubes Pouches and Wildlife Choobs.
So, why do big innovations from big names not always work even though the market is growing at a fast pace? Well, we know that fromage frais and light or low fat offerings are not faring so well, but trends for indulgent desserts, Greek yoghurt, healthy breakfast offerings, on the go products and non-dairy are all areas to watch. In particular there are some areas that we at The Value Engineers will be keeping a close eye on:
Breakfast hybrids such as MOMA: this innovative idea has stormed the healthy, on the go breakfast and now retail giant Asda has adopted a similar range of yoghurt and granola mixes to follow in MOMA’s footsteps. But what’s next in yoghurt/breakfast hybrid product innovation? Could there be more adaptations of this theme to come? There certainly seems to be a taste for it….
Non dairy: health is a big area that Activia seem to dominate currently, but as understanding of health increases and the benefits of non-dairy become more appealing brands like Alpro with their expanding non-dairy product range could be set to go more mainstream. Who, if anyone will take the opportunity to steal, share or come at non-dairy from a non-plant based/soya perspective?