mom and daughter eating yogurt

Yogurt: A Global Breakfast Staple

A popular staple around the world, yogurt is also relevant to consumers’ growing interests in protein, functional products, and healthy snacking. To drive additional growth in the market, manufacturers can explore the state of the global yogurt market and tap into some of today's top yogurt trends.


  • The demand for high-protein yogurt is increasing.
  • Drinkable yogurt with functional benefits is gaining popularity. 

The Origins of Yogurt

Yogurt is believed to have first appeared somewhere around 5,000 to 10,000 years ago during the Neolithic period when farming began. Archeological evidence includes pots from this period that were used to store milk. The fermentation of milk into yogurt was likely something that occurred naturally, especially in warm climates. Yogurt was found to be safe, tasty, and nourishing and was embraced by ancient civilizations in Asia, Europe, and the Middle East.

Global Yogurt Market

Yogurt continues to be a favorite product today. The global retail yogurt market was valued at $88.8 billion in 2019, up 5.6% from the year before.1 Asia Pacific (ASPAC) leads at $41 billion (with 46% market share) and is the fastest-growing market for yogurt (+9.3%).2 Europe, the Middle East, and Africa (EMEA) make up the second-largest regional market for yogurt at $29 billion (+3.4%), followed by North America at $10.5 billion (+0.1%), and Latin American (LATAM) at $8.5 billion (+3.4%).3

couple drinking coffee

The ASPAC and LATAM yogurt markets are known for their high proportion of drinkable yogurts (64% and 51%, respectively), while the EMEA and North America yogurt markets are dominated by spoonable yogurt (78% and 89%).4 Danone Groupe remains the global leader in yogurt with a 15% market share, but Yakult is the leading brand with 5% of brand share.5 The top fifteen brands make up 54% of the global yogurt market, with Yakult, Ambrosial, and Just Yoghurt leading in drinking yogurt and Activia, Danone, and Yoplait leading in spoonable yogurt.6 

Countries with some of the lowest per capita consumption of yogurt showed the largest increases in 2019 compared to the prior year, including India (+13.9%), the Philippines (+11.4%), Indonesia (+10.8%), and China (+7.9%).7 Conversely, many countries with high per capita consumption (particularly in Europe) have been experiencing declines. Per capita consumption declined in Switzerland (-8.0%), France (-6.5%), and Germany (-5.7%), for example, between 2015 and 2018.8

Trends in Yogurt

To address the needs of today’s consumers and drive growth in the yogurt market, it’s essential that manufacturers are aware of the most important yogurt trends underway:

High Protein

High-protein yogurt is increasingly in demand as a better-for-you snack that offers satiety and sustained energy. More than three in four global active consumers say they use high-protein yogurt as a snack, and almost one in three indicated a rise in consumption recently.9 In the European market alone, new yogurt launches with added or high-protein claims quadrupled between 2014 and 2020, growing from 3% to 13%.10 


Yogurt high in protein with low fat and no added sugar is proving to be the winning formula, with this combination showing the highest purchase intent among UK consumers.11 One in four of the high-protein spoonable yogurts launched globally 2020 featured a reduced/no/low-fat claim, while no added sugar claims for new high-protein yogurts more than doubled from 2015 to 2020.12 

Fortified, Indulgent Yogurt Drinks 

Drinkable yogurts that offer fortified indulgence are also on the rise. A prime example is Danone’s ProFuel, a cultured dairy beverage fortified with protein and caffeine from coffeeberry extract. ProFuel offers not only a nutritious source of energy, but several indulgent flavors to choose from—including Strawberry Banana, Peach, Mixed Berry, and Vanilla.

Indulgent flavors in yogurt drinks are especially appealing to younger consumers; 33% of U.S. consumers ages 18-25 agree indulgent yogurt drink innovations would encourage them to buy more compared to 19% of consumers ages 65 and older.13 Added nutrients and functional ingredients help make indulgent flavors more permissible.

Nutritious and Delicious Dairy Solutions

Whether a company is looking to tap into Asia’s fast-growing yogurt market or boost declining sales in more developed markets, keeping a close eye on the trends of today is key to offering the formats, flavors, and ingredients consumers want. Glanbia Nutritionals’ dairy solutions include proteins and nutrient premixes to meet today’s needs for even healthier dairy products.

Contact us to learn more about our wide range of dairy solutions.


1-6. Euromonitor – January 2020. Includes drinking yogurt, flavored yogurt, and plain yogurt.
7. Mintel Market Sizes – February 2020.
8. Mintel – The Future of Yogurt & Desserts – January 2020.
9. FMCG Gurus – Active Nutrition Survey – Q3 2019.
10. Mintel – A Year of Innovation in Yogurt – August 2019.
11-12. Mintel Global New Product Database – August 2021.
13. Mintel – The Future of Dairy and Non-Dairy Drinks – January 2020.

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