Sales figures provided to FoodManufacture.co.uk from Kantar Worldpanel reveal that the UK yogurt market is currently worth £1.2bn.
This marks a growth of 4.6% in the 52 weeks to 16 May 2010, compared with the previous year.
The largest growth in value terms was seen in the long-life yogurt sector, which increased 97% over the year to reach £3.4m. However, a large part of this increase may be put down to higher priced products, as volume sales of long-life yogurts actually decreased 13% in the period, from 813,000kg to 701,000kg.
Kantar splits the yogurt market into the following sectors: bio, children’s, long-life, low fat, luxury, plain/natural, set type, and very low fat.
The largest sector in terms of value sales is bio yogurt, which notched up sales of £370m in the year to May 2010. Luxury yogurts take second place, valued at £316m, with ‘very low fat’ yogurts following at £259m.
Figures from Mintel’s Global New Products Database (GNPD) show that spoonable yogurts were by far the most popular product launches in the yogurt category, accounting for 70% of all new products launched in the UK over the past year.
Drinking yogurts followed in second place, accounting for 25% of all launches, while soy yogurts took a 5% share.
The most popular claims made on products launched in the UK were ‘vegetarian’ (appearing on 66% of products), ‘low/no/reduced fat’ (63%), ‘organic’ and ‘environmentally friendly package’ (38% each), ‘gluten-free’ and ‘allergen-free’ (36% each), ‘no additives/preservatives’ (32%) and ‘digestive health’ (25%).
Other claims appearing on new yogurt products were ‘immune system’ (9%), ‘low/no/reduced sugar’ (9%), ‘all natural’ (7%), ‘prebiotic’ (7%), ‘vegan’ (5%), ‘no animal ingredients’ (5%), ‘vitamin/mineral fortified’ (4%) and ‘added calcium’ (4%).
Europe leads in global launches
Mintel’s May 2010 update on the market for yogurt, soy yogurt and chilled desserts identifies a 9% increase in global product launches in the category over the past year, bolstered by strong demand in Europe.
European launches in the yogurt category accounted for 65% of all new launches during the review period, led by Germany (19%), France (13%) and Italy (10%).
The split between sub-categories was: 53% spoonable yogurt, 46% chilled desserts and 1% soy yogurt. Top claims used on new products in Europe were ‘no additives/preservatives’ (21%), ‘no/low/reduced fat’ (18%) and ‘organic’ (9%).
“Healthy low fat, calorie and sugar claims will remain very important, especially in the yogurt market given that many people think of yogurt as a healthy option. However people will also want indulgence, and to drive interest, yogurt should also on occasion emphasise its indulgent side,” writes Mintel.