Dannon Rolling Out Activia Probiotic Yogurt in U.S

WHITE PLAINS, N.Y. -- The Dannon Co. is getting more active than ever in the U.S., introducing its probiotic yogurt brand Activia throughout the nation this month.

According to the company, Activia is the first and only probiotic yogurt clinically proven to help naturally regulate the digestive system in two weeks, when eaten daily as part of a balanced diet.

Already one of Groupe Danone's best-selling yogurt products internationally, Activia earned 650 million euros in 2004 sales in over 20 countries, mainly in Europe and Asia. The probiotic yogurt and dairy drinks market is currently estimated to be about $10 billion worldwide. Activia was first rolled out in 1987 in France.

"Dannon is the first name in yogurt in the U.S., and in bringing Activia and its benefits to the American marketplace we will continue to build our leadership with the next innovation in yogurt -- probiotics," said Dannon president and c.e.o. Juan Carlos Dalto in a statement. "Americans are increasingly looking to food for benefits beyond basic nutrition, and probiotics, such as Activia and our other great-tasting wellness products, including DanActive, do just this while accelerating growth in the already expanding yogurt category."

DanActive, first introduced to grocery stores in early 2004, is a probiotic drink known elsewhere in the world as Actimel (the drink was previously sold in U.S. health food stores as Dannon Actimel). Containing such beneficial live cultures as L. casei Defensis, the product is available at Whole Foods, Wegmans, Wild Oats, Schnucks, and select Wal-Mart, HEB, Giant Eagle, Publix, Albertsons, Winn-Dixie, Safeway, and Giant-Landover stores.

Dannon's U.S. launch of Activia will be supported by a 360-degree marketing plan debuting next month and encompassing advertising, consumer promotions, and in-store promotions. The product will be sold across the country in food retailers' yogurt sections and will come in six flavors: Strawberry, Vanilla, Blueberry, Peach, Prune, and Mixed Berry. Activia will be available in four-ounce four- and eight-packs retailing for a suggested $2.49 and $4.49, respectively.

The Dannon Co., a subsidiary of Groupe Danone, one of the world's leading producers of packaged foods and beverages, makes and sells about 100 flavors, styles, and sizes of yogurt. Dannon is the top-selling brand of yogurt products, sold under the names Dannon and Danone.
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