One such example is major dairy player Morinaga, which recently added a new probiotic enteric milk to its portfolio of exclusively home-delivered products.
Targeted at the elderly market, the product contains the company's proprietary probiotic strain, Bifidobacterium BB 536, and LAC-shield, an ingredient made from heat-treated Lactobacillus paracasei MCC 1849.
To meet the elderly’s need for calcium, the calcium content is also about 1.5 times as much as the standard composition at 193mg of calcium per 115ml.
Available from April 12 nationwide in Japan, it is an addition to Morinaga’s existing list of 20 exclusively home-delivered products, including milk, yogurt, and health food such as tofu.
The home delivery market in Japan is becoming more prominent due to a greying population, since the elderly may have difficulties going out for grocery shopping, the company pointed out.
The majority of these consumers are in the 60s to 80s.
“For products meant for home delivery, we mainly select those which can support consumers’ health with long-term, continuous intake,” company’s spokeswoman Erika Sato told NutraIngredients-Asia.
Besides Morinaga, competitor Meiji and Megmilk Snowbrand are also offering products that are exclusively for home delivery.
Targeted at the elderly, some of these products are meant to promote joint and bone health, including a yogurt drink from Meiji which contains glucosamine, collagen, and vitamin C. Others include a milk product that contains branched-chain amino acids (BCAAs) to boost muscle growth.
Most popular products
According to Morinaga, their three most popular products in the home delivery category are mostly probiotic yogurts containing the company’s propriety strain BB536.
They are Morinaga Caldus and drinking yogurt. These products also contain calcium, LAC-Shield, and lactoferrin.
Dairy price hike
Starting from this month, the three major dairy players in Japan – Meiji, Morinaga, and Megmilk Snowbrand will be increasing prices of their products, including home delivery products.
A total of 235 products, ranging from milk, yogurt, to chilled desserts, will be repriced. The bulk of it will come from Meiji (111), followed by Megmilk Snowbrand (79), and Morinaga (45).
The main reason for the price adjustment, was due to a lesser number of domestic farmers and a reduction in milk production capacity.
Other reasons include the rising cost of raw ingredients and labour costs.