CHINA – Danish multinational dairy cooperative Arla Foods is targeting Chinese children with its newly launched concepts – yogurt in pouches and cheese snacks – featuring its Nutrilac range of functional protein solutions.
The cheese snacks combine Nutrilac organic milk protein with real cheese to provide children with much of their daily recommended calcium and protein intake.
The offerings are available in plain or sweet versions and offer a mild, milky taste and smooth structure.
Meanwhile, Arla Foods Ingredients’ yogurt in pouches is marketed as an “easily squeezable” concept.
Arla says that the yogurt pouch is available in plain and fruit versions, and manufacturers can use “source of protein” and “source of calcium” claims.
Demand for Organic and Clean Label Foods Soars
The dairy cooperative notes that there is significant potential for organic snack foods for Chinese children with fifty-seven percent of young mothers in China considering organic a highly important food attribute
“Children have a special place in Chinese culture, and the growing number of affluent middle-class parents want the very best for them,” says Yuanyuan Li, sales manager at Arla Foods Ingredients.
She explains that this is driving demand for snacks that can be trusted as safe and nutritious, as well as increasing interest in organic and clean label options.
“High-quality dairy protein is a perfect match for these needs. Our new recipe concepts demonstrate the potential for health-focused innovation in the Chinese market and highlight the opportunities to expand product lines with organic and premium options.”
Premiumization, a hot topic in China’s infant nutrition market
Notably, China also has the world’s second-largest population of children, meaning there is a vast market for F&B in this space.
Premiumization has also been a hot topic for the region’s infant nutrition market, with FrieslandCampina Ingredients and NZMP both noting the rise of organic and natural claims.
According to Arla Foods Ingredients, organic food is seen as premium, safe, healthy and natural and further points out that China’s organic market is expected to grow by 16.3 percent between 2020 and 2025.
Innova Market Insights, on its part, notes that there has been a 7 percent average annual growth in food, beverages and supplements launched with a clean label claim (Global, 2015-2019).
As of 2019, clean label claims accounted for 18 percent of total food, beverage and supplement launches in China, underscoring the importance of this claim to the chinese people.
One of the main categories driving growth is baby food and formula with many young mothers already choosing organic formula for infants.
Evidence also points to opportunities for organic products for older children.
Arla, for instance, states that 44 percent of young women with children say they would consider organic foods as their first choice if they were more readily available.
With demand for organic foods soaring in China, the new functional protein concepts by Arla are expected to meet this demand and drive more growth for the company in the Asian nation.
Liked this article? Subscribe to Food Business Africa News, our regular email newsletters with the latest news insights from Africa and the World’s food and agro industry. SUBSCRIBE HERE