Shanghai’s Marvelous Foods has announced its Yeyo brand is now available in Aldi stores throughout China. The coconut yoghurt has been stocked both physically and for online distribution. The move comes as part of Aldi China’s new ‘healthy eating challenge’ designed to coincide with the Olympics’ popularity. The campaign is social media-based and looks to start conversations about healthy food swaps.
Yeyo has been developed to be sugar, dairy and additive-free alternative to conventional yoghurt. It is the first vegan-friendly coconut yoghurt product to be picked up by Aldi China. Yeyo is set to be a hero product for the grocery giant’s new healthy eating initiative.
Making good on promises
In January, it was announced that Marvelous Foods, owner of the Yeyo brand, had scooped $1.2 million in new funding. The investment was earmarked for expansion within China, before looking to international markets. At the time, the brand revealed that new product lines would be created with the funding, alongside the procurement of bigger sales channels. The new agreement with Aldi China is a fulfilment of the latter.
Previously, Yeyo was stocked in more than 90 outlets, with the addition of Aldi, at least another 15 have been added. “We have been working hard to make Yeyo more accessible to consumers and are very pleased to be able to do so on a whole new scale through ALDI’s network,” Christiana Zhu, co-founder of Marvelous Foods, said in a statement.
High profile partnerships
Aldi first opened in China in 2019. The inaugural Shanghai location has since been flanked by at least a further 14 throughout the country. A major grocery chain globally, Aldi is the latest big name to partner with Yeyo. Specifically, it is the latest to do so with a focus on health and wellbeing. Former partnerships have included premium activewear brand Lululemon and fitness favourite Maia Active.
Building on brand activation activities that centred around Yeyo being better for health, Aldi has highlighted the yoghurts as being suitable for a nutritious base. Oat products are paired with dairy-free yoghurts in various promotional shots as meal and snack inspiration. “We have seen that this is a popular way to eat Yeyo,” Athena Zhu, co-founder of Marvelous Foods, said in a statement. “A top fitness influencer once featured a recipe for overnight oats using Yeyo that gained over 35,000 likes on the Chinese social media platform RED.”
Aldi is stocking three of Yeyo’s six-strong product line. The ‘pure’ option will sit alongside two granola-topped options. ‘Peach Crunch’ and ‘Strawberry Chocolate’ have been selected.
A growing appetite for vegan dairy
Up to 90 percent of Asian consumers have some degree of lactose intolerance. This, coupled with 73 percent of Chinese consumers claiming to be happy spending more on healthy foods, means that there is a growing market for animal-free dairy in the country, Between2015-2017, plant milk sales in China grew by 17 percent.
Swedish alt-milk giant Oatly has sought to capitalise on the trend by opening its first production facility in China. The news was announced last November, but domestic brands are looking to lead the plant-based dairy sector.
Back in 2019, Nongfu Spring launched China’s first vegan yoghurt. Made with fermented plant milk, they were released in three flavours; coconut, almond and walnut. More recently, Shanghai-based Berrywell announced it is making dairy-free yoghurts from chickpeas.
All photos by Marvelous Foods.