The Australian lactose-free flavoured milk category accounted for 4.7% share of H&W flavoured milk in 2016 and is set to be worth US$2.1 million by 2021 a Compound Annual Growth Rate (CAGR) of 4.1% for the period 2016-2021, according to GlobalData a leading data and analytics company.

Dairy products are emerging as the breakfast of choice for time-pressed Australian consumers with 54% of respondents claiming to consume a dairy product at breakfast time, according to the latest GlobalData consumer survey.

Parmalat’s latest launch, a lactose-free milk range under the ‘Paul’s Zymil’ brand, could not be more timely. The product, available in popular strawberry and chocolate flavours, will not only appeal to consumers with specific dietary preferences but also those looking for more healthier beverage choices.

The Australian Bureau of Statistics estimates that 4.5% of the country’s population is lactose-intolerant which combined with the trend for ‘better for you’ products is leading to more NPD focused on eliminating certain food/ingredient groups from the diet.

Young consumers are also influenced by new dietary habits like ‘lactose-free’ which are popularised online. GlobalData’s survey found that 24% of Australian respondents aged 25-34 years think that products with ‘lactose-free’ claims are healthier, while 17% affirmed they were intolerant to lactose.

‘‘Personalised products designed to deliver specific consumer benefits have emerged as a major trend in the food & drinks industry in recent years, and Parmalat’s latest product launch will continue this trend.," Meenakshi Haran, Consumer Markets Analyst at GlobalData commented.

While there is growing demand for ‘better for you’ food and drinks, consumers are unwilling to compromise on taste but are interested in trying new flavours, with 52% of respondents claiming to try new varieties of milk, ‘often or sometimes’.

‘‘There is certainly plenty of opportunities for Dairy manufacturers to capitalize on this growing demand for healthier, unique taste and flavour experiences," said Haran.