By Chris Sorensen - Thursday, November 17, 2011 - 8 Comments
Finally, something good from Greece
Investors have understandably shied away from most things labelled “Greek,” as the debt-ridden Mediterranean country threatens to topple the eurozone and take the global economy down with it. But there’s one place where people seemingly can’t get enough: the yogourt section of their grocer’s dairy case. After years of focusing on making yogourt thinner, sweeter and laden with bacteria to improve digestive health, suddenly dairy companies are falling over themselves to produce so-called “Greek” variations that are thicker, creamier and tart tasting.
The sudden shift in direction is largely the result of one man. Several years ago, Hamdi Ulukaya, a Turkish-American businessman, spotted a market opportunity for a thicker, protein-rich strained yogourt like the yogourt he was familiar with back home (the straining removes excess liquid and sugar). Ulukaya’s first case of Chobani Greek yogourt rolled off the production line in 2007 and quickly tapped into an unfilled demand among Americans for a more substantial, but still good-for-you, snack. “Our goal was to reinvent the yogourt category,” says Kyle O’Brien, the vice-president of sales for Chobani’s parent company, Agro Farma, who has been involved since the beginning.
Reinvent it they did. Chobani is not only the dominant player in the fast-growing segment, which now accounts for 15 per cent of all yogourt sales in the United States, but it’s also the number one U.S. brand of yogourt altogether (it’s not yet officially sold in Canada, although some specialty retailers stock it in their stores). It’s the sort of disruptive innovation that one usually associates with technology, not foodstuffs. “It’s a success story that’s pretty amazing,” says Joel Gregoire, a Canadian food and beverage analyst for NPD Group, who notes that yogourt of all types is one of the fastest-growing food categories in North America, with consumption increasing by more than 100 per cent over the past decade in Canada alone.
By Julia Belluz - Tuesday, July 5, 2011 at 9:36 AM - 15 Comments
The Statement: “Fermented milk products such as yogurt and kefir contain friendly probiotic bacteria that may help guard against disease… Yogurt’s active bacterial cultures can help stimulate the immune system, reduce symptoms of antibiotic-associated diarrhea and improve the absorption of lactose in people with mild to moderate lactose intolerance.” (Leslie Beck, The Globe and Mail, 06/23/2011)
Yogurt has been starring in the news lately for its panacea-like ability to do everything from “stimulate the immune system,” as Beck writes, to help aid weight loss, according to reports about a new 20-year Harvard study. Of the latter, the Toronto Star recently stated, “Vegetables and fruits helped keep weight in check, but nuts and yogurt were the most effective. Most of the test subjects ate no-fat or low-fat yogurt.”
But before you go stocking up on the fermented miracle food, know this: Continue…
By Michael Friscolanti - Thursday, April 2, 2009 at 1:00 PM - 4 Comments
First it’s milk, then they say it’s yogourt
According to the label, a daily serving of DanActive—a popular new drink from the makers of Activia yogourt—helps to “strengthen your body’s defences.” If that’s true, you may want to consider chugging a few bottles before finishing the rest of this article. Some readers may be sickened by the facts.
At a time when markets are melting and major manufacturers are begging Ottawa for handouts, Danone, one of the country’s leading dairy companies, has a plan that would create dozens of jobs and inject millions of dollars into the sagging economy. The problem? Bureaucrats at the Canada Border Services Agency. Instead of rolling out the red carpet, the CBSA is locked in a costly court battle that boils down to one baffling question: is DanActive a beverage or a yogourt? (Or, as the judge phrased it: “To drink or to eat, that is the question.”)
By Lianne George - Thursday, August 21, 2008 at 5:30 PM - 0 Comments
Just because Sarah Haskins is awesome, click here to see her latest Target: Women…
Just because Sarah Haskins is awesome, click here to see her latest Target: Women report on Current TV. It’s on the weird and wonderful world of birth control advertising. Nothing she does will ever live up to her yogurt report in my heart. Still, this is funny as hell.