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Will probiotics boom push Lifeway Foods kefir to the fore?

Will probiotics boom push Lifeway Foods kefir to the fore?
Lifeway Foods has launched its first media campaign as part of it global growth strategy. See the first television commercial and learn about CEO Julie Smolyansky's vision for the future.

Can kefir become a household word or, even more, a daily dairy purchase?

Lifeway Foods CEO Julie Smolyansky believes so as she strives to build the Illinois-based kefir company lauched in 1986 into a global icon.

In this interview with The Street, she discusses the outlook for probiotics and the Lifeway brand.

While dairy case sales may be dipping, probiotics are proliferating as science backs what many in the natural products industry have been promoting for decades. The probiotic market has been growing at a 7 percent clip and is expected to reach $15 billion in U.S. sales in 2019, according to New Hope Natural Media's What's Next for Probiotics report.

Smolyansky told The Street that dairy comprises 70 percent of the worldwide probiotics market, which creates opportunity for Lifeway to gain market share.

As part of the company's expansion plan, Lifeway recently:

  • Created the "And Me" campaign to promote the company's social impact efforts to support organizations worldwide. The television ad debuted during the Golden Globes awards ceremony.
  • Expanded to the U.K. and Canada.
  • Introduced a smaller, single-serve or trial size exclusively in Target.

Meet the Lifeway community—from moms to trees—in the commercial that debuted during the Golden Globes:

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