Lifeway Foods has today announced record fourth quarter sales increases for 2005 of 22% to reach US$5.2m from US$4.3m in 2004.

For the 2005 year ended December 31 sales rose 23% to US$20.1m from US$16.3m in 2004, an increase of US$3.8m.

Lifeway CEO Julie Smolyansky said: “We started the year off by completely redesigning the packaging for our flagship Kefir line, which made it more appealing to customers and this was evident all year long in our sales growth and the number of new customers we were able to attract, such as Target, Walmart and most recently Costco. We also saw our sales to our existing customers increase by double digits as well.”

Lifeway, makers of milk-based cultured beverage Kefir, said the company is now America’s leading supplier of the cultured dairy product. Kefir contains ten types of “friendly,” active probiotic cultures.

“We started 2006 off by ringing the closing bell at the Nasdaq, and in the coming months we will be updating the packaging for the rest of our product line, as well as introducing a variety of healthy, nutritious dairy products to bolster our already strong product line. We look forward to another great year,” added Smolyansky.