Probiotic shots are an important factor in the growth of the cultured dairy segment, which is set to increase in value to above US$15bn by 2010, the latest research from Packaged Facts has suggested. 

Sales of probiotic shot are a relatively new product to the US market. The singe-serve functional dairy drinks contain microorganisms that aid the stomach and are set to grow by 97.4% over a five-year period, the US research group said.

US cultured dairy sales totalled $9.6bn in 2005, $4.8bn of which came from non-drinkable single and multi-pack cup and tube yogurts. Packaged Facts predicts that cultured fluids, such as drinkable yogurts, smoothies, shots, and kefir will witness a rapid rise in sales over the next four years.

Convenient packaging, portion-control, and the introduction of new flavours have been key drivers, packaged facts said, adding that health and wellness marketing offered greatest potential for expansion.”

In the last five years, yogurt production has increased 49% and sales have benefited most from the increased marketing of health benefits, such as digestive and immune strengthening,” said Don Montuori, the publisher of Packaged Facts. “While the market has reached a certain level of maturity, there is still great potential for growth with the expectation that US consumption rates will approach those of Europe which are currently four to five times higher.”