Arla Foods Ingredients launches first clean-label ambient yoghurt concept to meet Chinese demand

Arla Foods Ingredients has launched a clean-label concept to help brands meet growing demand for ambient yoghurt in China

The new solution is the first of its kind. It uses Nutrilac YO-4575, a 100% natural whey protein, to give unrefrigerated yoghurts a premium positioning with all-natural ingredients.

Nutrilac YO-4575 is unique because of its heat-stability and texturising properties. It keeps ambient products smooth and stable throughout shelf-life without the need for additives or preservatives.

Yoghurt sales are growing faster in China than anywhere else in the world, with ambient yoghurt being the fastest growing segment in the country’s liquid dairy market.

The category, which accounted for almost 30% of China’s entire yoghurt market in 2019, has seen a significantly higher growth rate than either chilled yoghurts or liquid milks.

Meanwhile, research shows that “made with real ingredients” and “no artificial flavour/colours” are the most important claims for Chinese consumers.

There is therefore clear potential for unrefrigerated yoghurts with clean labels. To help manufacturers meet this need, Arla Foods Ingredients has created an ambient stirred yoghurt concept containing just five all-natural ingredients.

It contains more than 3% protein, with Nutrilac YO-4575 providing high nutritional value owing to its high amino acid content. Like all of Arla Foods Ingredients whey products, it is sourced from the milk of grass-fed cows in the EU.

Torben Jensen, Senior Category Manager, FDP, at Arla Foods Ingredients, said: “Ambient yoghurts with a natural label are looking more and more like a major opportunity to capture a slice of China’s growing yoghurt market. But to be part of this journey, manufacturers need to offer something different.”

He added: “Clean label products are the perfect way for brands to differentiate in the category, while tapping into demand for premium products. We’re proud to have developed the first clean label ambient yoghurt. Our concept is delicious, convenient and made with all-natural ingredients. It offers a premium edge, with an ideal texture, fresh taste and great stability.”

To highlight the concept’s flavour possibilities, Arla Foods Ingredients is offering it in three varieties: vanilla, peach and green tea. In addition to flavouring, the yoghurt contains skimmed milk, cream (38% fat), Nutrilac YO-4575, sugar and native tapioca starch.

Companies