Consumers in the United States no longer are squeamish about having “healthy” bacteria in their food.
“They already trust probiotics and understand, at least to a certain degree, what they do,” said Lynn Dornblaser, director of innovation and insight for the Mintel Group, in an April 9 presentation at Ingredient Marketplace in Orlando.
Now established, the probiotic market has entered a new phase.
“More and more products are talking about more than just one benefit,” she said. “They are not talking about just the probiotics.”
She gave Zen Monkey yogurt featuring oats as one example. Another is Dannon Fruit on the Bottom qualifying as an excellent source of vitamin D. Prebiotics such as inulin are being combined more often with probiotics in products, too. Instead of the prebiotics, companies should focus on the goodness of fiber and probiotics in promotions, Ms. Dornblaser said. They should focus on health benefits rather than science.
“Mainstream consumers are a bit science-phobic,” she said.
The probiotics market in general remains fragmented she said. Group Danone (7.8%) and Nestle (3.6%) had the highest percentage of global probiotic product launches from 2011-2014, according to Mintel. Liberté (1.6%), General Mills (1.4%) and Groupe Lactalis (1.4%) followed.
No other company reached 1%. Private label products with probiotics are a trend in the United States, Ms. Dornblaser said. Kroger and Aldi Group each had 0.9% of all global probiotic product launches from 2011-14 while Woolworths had 0.8%. A bar at Woolworths features 7 grams of fiber and 1 billion probiotic cultures, Ms. Dornblaser said.