Research shows dairy in need of refreshment

Research on consumer purchase intent by Mintel Purchase Intelligence reveals that there is an opportunity for yoghurt and milk to be positioned as “refreshing”, in order to meet the demands of Australian consumers who value the refreshing qualities of these products.

In China, lactobacillus drinks already offer refreshment and health benefits. According to Mintel Global New Products Database (GNPD), China accounted for a quarter of the world’s dairy products launched in the three years to June 2019 with “refreshing” in their descriptions – of which most were lactobacillus drinks. The described refreshing feeling of these products is delivered by their sour taste, which triggers salivation.

In Australia, Mintel Purchase Intelligence research shows that the top four attributes that drive purchase intent of yoghurts among consumers are value; how tasty the product is; the excitement around the purchase; and how refreshing it is. Interestingly, spoonable yoghurt is slightly – yet significantly – perceived as more refreshing than drinking yoghurt, suggesting that refreshment cues are not only linked to texture, but also to flavour.

There are a few examples that meet the criteria of refreshing, which is due to how the yoghurt’s packaging and eye-appeal to the public. For example, there is the transparent pot from Gippsland Dairy’s Luscious Strawberries & Cream Twist Yogurt. The visual swirl in a transparent container means that consumers can see real, fresh-looking fruit.

Then there is the cocktail-inspired flavours of Chobani’s Pineapple Lime Greek Yogurt. The refreshing positioning of this yoghurt is reinforced by its cocktail-inspired flavour, and the packaging design, which is designed to evoke the vibe of an exotic beach holiday.
Purchase Intelligence research also reveals that the top four attributes driving purchase intent of flavoured milk and plant-based drinks for Australians are the same as yoghurt.

However, flavoured milk is more likely to be seen as more refreshing than plant-based drinks, likely because milk is more often chilled than shelf-stable. For example, Califia Farms Go Coconuts Coconut and Coconut Water Blend is perceived as refreshing by 61 per cent of surveyed Australian consumers reviewing launches of plant-based drinks on Mintel Purchase Intelligence.

Meanwhile Coco Mojo’s Berry Refreshing Strawberry Flavoured Coconut Milk Drink with Added Protein contains coconut milk and coconut water and is perceived as refreshing by 59 per cent of surveyed Australian consumers on Mintel Purchase Intelligence.

Mintel research also indicates that the “refreshing” positioning can lead to other positive associations. For instance, in the UK, as many as three in five carbonated soft drink users associate refreshing drinks with hydration, while half associate them with being cooling.
Then there is the Amul Masti Spiced Buttermilk, from India, which is seen as spicy, cool and refreshing. It is said to be rich in natural minerals and easy to digest.

Another is Arla Organic Free Range Kefir, from the UK, is described as a nourishing fermented milk drink with a mild and refreshing flavour and a touch of fizz.

Mintel’s Intelligence shows that through packaging design, chilled storage and flavours that are perceived to stimulate salivation to deliver an invigorating and cooling sensation, yoghurt and milk can be positioned as refreshing.