PepsiCo enters yogurt market

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PepsiCo Inc., the brand behind the cupboard favorites Cheetos and Doritos, is expanding its product range from the pantry to the refrigerator. This time, it includes yogurt.

In a move announced on Monday, the New York-based company will soon be rolling out a new line of yogurt thanks to a partnership with Theo Muller Group, the largest privately held dairy business in Germany. Their joint venture, called Muller Quaker Dairy, will introduce premium yogurt products to the Northeast and Mid Atlantic states later this month.

According to the Associated Press, the move will help the company capitalize on Americans’ growing appetite for yogurt.

Some of the new yogurt flavors, including “Choco Balls” and “Chocolate Flakes,” straddle the line between “good-for-your” and the “fun-for-you” foods PepsiCo is known for. Other yogurt flavors side more with healthy options, including traditional flavors, Greek-style and mixed-fruit varieties. PepsiCo did not report the caloric range of their new yogurt products ,but said that they would be comparable to other yogurts on the market.

The yogurt will be sold under the product name Muller Quaker Dairy.

The U.S. yogurt market is expected to reach $9 billion by 2016, doubling what it was in 2008.

"As we've seen through the success of our dairy business in other parts of the world, this is a category with strong growth prospects," Mehmood Khan, PepsiCo chief scientific officer, global research & development, said in a news release.

While this is PepsiCo’s first step into the yogurt market, this isn’t the company’s first investment in the dairy industry. The company acquired Wimm-Bill-Dann, Russia's largest dairy company, in 2011 and has been part of a successful joint venture with Almarai, Saudi Arabia's largest dairy company, since 2009.



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