French dairy foods group Yoplait has teamed up with Canadian biotech company Neptune Technologies & Bioressources to research and develop functional fresh dairy products.

Under the terms of the partnership, Yoplait and Neptune will collaborate in the development of dairy products containing Neptune Krill Oil (NKO), which will be clinically tested for their effect on widely prevalent chronic conditions.

The plan is to launch the first approved products developed through the partnership in selected markets prior to a worldwide roll-out.

“The combined know-how of both companies will create a strong competitive advantage for Yoplait in the FDP (fresh dairy product) market,” said Yoplait president Lucien Fa.

Henri Harland, president and CEO at Neptune, said: “This alliance endorses Neptune’s strategic development and it also represents a major achievement in the functional food business with a world-leading food company.”

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Best known for its Yop yoghurt drinks and Petits Filous children’s desserts, Yoplait is present in 45 countries, and had sales of EUR2.7bn (US$3.63bn) in 2006.