Dairy giants Chr. Hansen and Mengniu Dairy join hands to promote probiotic bacteria in China

Milwaukee, Wisconsin – The unveiling of new research results and the future for probiotic bacteria in China. These are just a few of the items on the menu when Mengniu Dairy, China’s number one milk producer, strengthens its already close ties with Chr. Hansen, the world leader in dairy cultures.

“On December 20th and 21st, our two companies will act as joint hosts at an international workshop on healthy probiotic bacteria in Beijing. We expect some 120 visitors, including Chinese and overseas scientific experts, business partners, and representatives from the press,” explains Mark Johnston, Chr. Hansen’s Country Manager for Asia.

Earlier this year, Chr. Hansen and Mengniu formed a strategic alliance to promote probiotic bacteria to the Chinese people. As part of the agreement, Chr. Hansen will help train Mengniu’s R&D and production staff, distributors and sales force, and advise on marketing strategy and positioning for probiotics on the Chinese market.

Chr. Hansen in turn is recognized as the preferred supplier to Mengniu, which further underlines the dairy giant’s prime position among Chr. Hansen’s business partners in China.

Excellent growth and even better potential
Probiotics are gaining strength throughout the world in recent years, and China looks likely to be the next nation to experience significant growth. Dairy consumption in China is growing at an average rate of more than 20 percent, and Mengniu plays an important part in this development. The Inner Mongolia based company has achieved growth rates of 100 percent each year since established in 1999.

“Compared to Europe, the development of yogurt with probiotics in China is like an infant—an infant that is going to grow much bigger. We are confident that probiotic yogurt will be greatly appreciated by consumers in China,” says Aiping Liu, R&D manager from Mengniu.

The numbers certainly seem to confirm this. According to market analyst Euromonitor, the milk sector in the world's most populous nation grew by no less than 188 percent between 1999 and 2004, but still the market holds a vast, untapped potential. The National Bureau of Statistics of China forecasts a ten-fold increase in Chinese dairy consumption between now and 2015.

Operating from facilities in thirty countries worldwide, Chr. Hansen is a global biotechnology company that provides ingredients to the food, dairy, human health and nutrition, and animal health industries. Based on intensive research, Chr. Hansen works to improve the quality of food and health for people all over the world. The company is a primary supplier of cultures, probiotics, enzymes, colors, flavors, seasonings, sweeteners, and tablet coatings and excipients, which are applied in foods and beverages, pharmaceuticals, dietary supplements, and agricultural products. For more information, visit www.chr-hansen.com.

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