Distribution of probiotic one-shot drinks is broadening in India, with a major push occurring in cities like Mumbai, as disposable Indian incomes rise, and more people take an interest in health benefits promised by functional foods.
An Indian manufacturing facility has been established by Yakult’s Indian subsidiary, a 50:50 joint venture with its major competitor in the probiotic digestive health area, French dairy giant, Danone.
"Though the market for probiotic foods in India is still at a nascent stage, as pioneers and global leaders in this category we will play a major role in developing the probiotics food market in India,” said Kiyoshi Oike, Yakult Danone India.
‘Yakult Ladies’ are being employed to deliver Yakult products door-to-door in Mumbai, New Delhi and other cities.
Yakult has about 80,000 Yakult Ladies in Japan.
Estimates put the global probiotic foods and drinks market at about €10bn.