Danone Considers Dairy-Free Yogurt While Demand Rises
Mooove over, dairy! There may be some new plant-based alternatives in town!
By: Kaitlin Meilert
International yogurt giant Danone (Dannon in the U.S.) is planning to expand its presence in the vegan market by adding dairy-free options to its big-name yogurt brands Activia and Actimel.
With dairy sales declining and its own yogurt sales in a slump, Danone is eager to take advantage of the sky-rocketing plant-based market. In fact, the company already took the plunge when it acquired WhiteWave Foods for $12.5 million in 2017. WhiteWave Foods is the parent company of several major plant-based brands, including Silk, So Delicious, Vega, and Alpro.
Danone, now DanoneWave, even dropped dairy brand Stoneyfield to make the acquisition as smooth as vegan yogurt. The company later invested $60 million into expanding WhiteWave’s plant-based beverage facility in Virginia.
“The intent is that any offering in which consumers would like to have a choice between dairy and plant-based alternatives, we should make it available because the consumer is looking for it,” a DanoneWave spokesperson told Chooseveg.com.
Could the future be vegan for DanoneWave? If numbers have anything to say about, maybe yes!
After acquiring WhiteWave in early 2017, DanoneWave reported a $760 million increase in sales later that year. The company further reported to Bloomberg that plant-based food accounts for more than half of DanoneWave’s sales.
On a wider scale, VegNews reports that the dairy-free market is expected to grow by 16.6 percent to $35 billion by 2024. Future Market Insights projects the dairy-free yogurt market alone to grow by 5 percent annually to $7.4 billion by 2027. Furthermore, dairy companies are dropping suppliers to keep up with shifting demand, with one 90-year-old dairy company shutting down completely to produce plant-based milk.
While this is great news for vegans, it’s even better news for cows in the dairy industry. DanoneWave has yet to release a timeline for their upcoming dairy-free additions to Activia and Actimel. In the meantime, there are plenty of dairy-free yogurt options for vegans to enjoy.
What’s your favorite brand of plant-based yogurt? Share your faves with us in the comment section below!