What you need to know

Dollar sales growth in the yogurt and yogurt drinks category has been strong, gaining 46% between 2009 and 2014 to reach estimated sales of $8.0 billion. The introduction of Greek-style products led to significant year-over-year growth in 2011 and subsequent years. While the pace of growth is expected to slow in the category, as the novelty of Greek offerings fades, overall product innovation that falls in line with consumer interest in health and indulgence will allow for continued positive performance.

Yogurt and yogurt drinks have thrived in recent years due to a combination of health positioning and product innovation that meets consumer demand for convenient, responsible, and snackable offerings. While Mintel forecasts growth to continue, it will be at a slower pace, due in part to the expansion of competing health-focused snack offerings, and a mellowing of the Greek-style yogurt newlywed period.

Keeping the category relevant to consumers will require expanded flavor innovation; the adoption of new and interesting styles that continue to fall in line with consumer interest in healthy snacking; the expansion of formats that allow for meal positioning and food pairings; and a venture into indulgence positioning that allows products to be the good tasting go-to for those looking for a low-guilt treat.


For the purposes of this report, the yogurt and yogurt drinks market has been segmented as follows:

  • Yogurt: sold in cups or tubes; meant to be spooned, squeezed, or "slurped." Greek-style yogurt is included as part of this segment.

  • Yogurt drinks: refrigerated yogurt products in a liquid, drinkable form. These products may include fruit or fruit-flavoring; includes yogurt "smoothies."

Value figures throughout this report are at retail selling prices (rsp) excluding sales tax unless otherwise stated.

Data sources

Sales data

  • Market Size and Forecast and Segment Performance sections: Total retail sales based on Information Resources, Inc. InfoScan Reviews; US Census Bureau, Economic Census.

  • Retail Channels section: based on Information Resources, Inc. InfoScan Reviews; US Census Bureau, Economic Census; except supermarket and drug store sales, which are based on Information Resources, Inc. InfoScan Reviews/Mintel

  • Leading Companies and Brand Analysis section: based on MULO sales data from Information Resources, Inc. InfoScan Reviews. MULO is defined as Multi Outlet, representative of the following channels: total US grocery, mass; total US drug; total Walmart, dollar, military, and club stores/Mintel

Consumer survey data

For the purposes of this report, Mintel commissioned exclusive consumer research through GMI to explore consumer consumption of attitudes and behaviors toward yogurt and yogurt drinks. Mintel was responsible for the survey design, data analysis, and reporting. Fieldwork was conducted May 21-June 4, 2014, among a sample of 2,000 adults aged 18+ with access to the internet.

Mintel selects survey respondents by gender, age, household income, and region so that they are proportionally representative of the US adult population using the internet. Mintel also slightly over-samples, relative to the population, respondents that are Hispanic or Black to ensure an adequate representation of these groups in our survey results and to allow for more precise parameter estimates from our reported findings.

Please note that Mintel surveys are conducted online and in English only. Hispanics who are not online and/or do not speak English are not included in the survey results.

Mintel also has analyzed data from Experian Marketing Services, using the Simmons Teen Study, and the Simmons Kids Study.

The Experian Marketing Services/Simmons Teens Study was conducted during Fall 2013 (November 2012-December 2013) and based on a sample of 1,811 teens aged 12-17, with results weighted to represent the US teen population. The Simmons Kids Study was conducted during Fall 2013 2013 (November 2012-December 2013) and based on a sample of 2,061 kids aged 6-11, with results weighted to represent the US kid population.

While race and Hispanic origin are separate demographic characteristics, Mintel often compares them to each other. Please note that the responses for race (White, Black, Asian, Native American, or other race) will overlap those that also are Hispanic, because Hispanics can be of any race.

Abbreviations and terms


The following is a list of abbreviations used in this report:

BFY Better for You
CPI Consumer Price Index
GMO Genetically Modified Organism
GNPD Global New Products Database
HFCS High Fructose Corn Syrup
MULO Multi Outlet, representative of following channels: total US grocery, mass, total US drug, total Walmart, dollar, military, and club
NCS/NHCS National Consumer Study/National Hispanic Consumer Study (Experian Marketing Services)
rBST Recombinant bovine somatotropin
: :
: :

Generations are discussed within this report, and they are defined as:

World War II/Swing generations Members of the WWII Generation were born in 1932 or before and are aged 82 or older in 2014. Members of the Swing Generation were born from 1933 to 1945 and are aged 69-81 in 2014.
Baby Boomers The generation born between 1946 and 1964. In 2014, Baby Boomers are between the ages of 50 and 68.
Generation X The generation born between 1965 and 1976. In 2014, Gen Xers are between the ages of 38 and 49.
Millennials* Born between 1977 and 1994, Millennials are aged 20-37 in 2014.
iGeneration Born between 1995 and 2007, members of iGen are aged 7-19 in 2014.
Emerging generation The newest generation born in 2008 as the annual number of births declined sharply with the recession. In 2014 members of this as-yet-unnamed generation are younger than age 7.

* also known as Generation Y or Echo Boomers

In order to provide an inflation-adjusted price value for markets, Mintel uses the CPI to deflate current prices. The CPI is defined as follows:

CPI The Consumer Price Index is a measure of the average change over time in the prices paid by urban consumers for a market basket of consumer goods and services.

The CPI and its components are typically used to adjust other economic series for price changes and to translate these series into inflation-free dollars. Examples of series adjusted by the CPI include retail sales, hourly, and weekly earnings, and components of the national income and product accounts. In addition, and in Mintel reports, the CPI is used as a deflator of the value of the consumer’s dollar to find its purchasing power. The purchasing power of the consumer’s dollar measures the change in the value to the consumer of goods and services that a dollar will buy at different dates.

The CPI is generally the best measure for adjusting payments to consumers when the intent is to allow consumers to purchase, at today’s prices, a market basket of goods and services equivalent to one that they could purchase in an earlier period. It is also the best measure to use to translate retail sales into real or inflation-free dollars.

Based on Bureau of Labor Statistics definition.
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