There’s a bewildering array of yogurt brands and varieties available It seems that every week there’s a new kid on the block. This plethora is due at least in part to massive overproduction of milk within the EU. In turn this means the price drops, so farmers increase production still further to try to make ends meet. Counterintuitive, but there you go. Anyway, all the milk has to go somewhere, hence the explosion in the yogurt market. Similarly there’s fierce competition here to avoid retailers and manufacturers getting stuck with an awful lot of sour milk, so the interbrand wars are long and hard, and very well financed.

Manufacturers struggle to outdo each other, and one way they do this is by having a staggering range of flavours. They add fruit, nuts, little biscuits, honey, you name it somebody somewhere will have done it. I noticed a new variant this week that has a layer of salted caramel. That might be quite interesting if I could be bothered to eat yogurt, which I don’t unless I’m in Turkey, Greece, or an Indian restaurant.

One brand has done an amazing volte face. I reckon it’s a stroke of genius. Alpro have just launched a yogurt-style product. It’s not milk based but soya based, and thus taps into the extremely lucrative but rather tiny market for people who reckon they are lactose intolerant. Few people actually are, but as with a lot of health matters it’s driven by fear rather than actuality, and Alpro and its ilk tap into the fear. Anyway, here’s the stroke of genius. They advertise the ‘yogurt’ by saying that it’s free of fruit/chocolate/nuts/little biscuits ‘so you can make just as you like it.’ Cue slo-mo of fruit/nuts/chocolate sprinkles tumbling into pots of yogurts. Fantastic. A premium priced product that contains less than its cheaper rivals.