DUIVEN, THE NETHERLANDS — From peach to papaya, fruit flavors rule the yogurt market, featured in more than two-thirds of global launches in the past year, according to Innova Market Insights. The figure rises to 75% in the United States and nearly 70% in Latin America countries for the year ended March 31.
Plain, natural or unflavored yogurts are the second most popular choice globally, representing approximately 12% of introductions, followed by chocolate and caramel flavors, then vanilla.
“The yogurt market is generally showing good growth, and this is reflected in terms of new product activity, where levels are continuing to rise globally,” said Lu Ann Williams, director of innovation at Innova Market Insights. “With an increasingly competitive marketplace, the need for product differentiation has led to developments in flavors over recent years, most notably into more upmarket and complex options, often featuring a number of different ingredients, sometimes with formulations taken from other sectors of the market, such as desserts, bakery and confectionery.”
Products with multiple compartments allow for the addition of sauces and purees or candy toppings. Chobani, New Berlin, N.Y., leveraged this style of packaging with its recent introduction of Flips, which feature flavored Greek yogurt with inclusions in the lid. Varieties include vanilla with corn flakes, honey oats and pecans; key lime with graham crumbles and white chocolate; strawberry with honey oats; and coconut with dark chocolate and almonds. YoCrunch Co. in January added its Yopa! Line of Greek yogurt with such toppings as whole grain granola, toasted almonds and dark chocolate pieces.
Additionally, yogurt makers may unveil new flavors as limited-edition products. This spring, General Mills, Inc. introduced a seasonal line of Yoplait yogurts in cocktail-inspired flavors, including pina colada and cosmopolitan.
Flavors in the yogurt market are trending toward exotic, unusual and more complex. Selections from Müller, PepsiCo’s joint venture with Müller Quaker Dairy, include low-fat yogurt with a layer of fruit mousse in such flavors as peach passionfruit, as well as a honeyed apricot variety of Greek yogurt.Indeed, yogurt consumption has grown across multiple day-parts to include desserts, according to research from Rosemont, Ill.-based NPD Group, helping explain the recent rise in indulgent textures, flavors and toppings.