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Yakult Middle East plans to set up facility in coming years

Yakult Middle East plans to set up facility in coming years
(From L to R) Koji Tanaka, MD at Yakult Middle East; Mohd Hasril Abdul Hamid, consul-general, Consulate General of Malaysia; Omar Mohd Salleh, trade commissioner at Malaysia Trade Centre; Eiji Amano, director of sales and marketing at Yakult Middle East.

By Waheed Abbas

Published: Mon 16 Sep 2019, 5:13 PM

Last updated: Fri 20 Sep 2019, 1:25 AM

Yakult Middle East, a subsidiary of Japan's Yakult Honsha Co, plans to set up a production facility in the region in the coming years, a top official said on Monday.
"Now we are in five GCC countries and the next step is to go to Saudi Arabia because it is a big market; also we want to establish a factory in the Middle East. We are searching for the location in the UAE. In Dubai, there are many free zones that have tax free benefits, but we need to study which is the best, considering our logistics and manpower needs," said Eiji Amano, director for sales and marketing at Yakult Middle East.
Amano was speaking on the sidelines of a press conference held to launch "gold" version its probiotic drink in the UAE. Amano revealed that people in the region like milk products and an increasing number are becoming health conscious, which will drive the growth for the company and demand of the brand.
In addition, there are not many competitors in this niche segment, he added.
"Currently, we are selling through retail, but then we will expand to food service section like hotels and restaurants. Globally, we work with hospitals and schools also. Because doctors understand the benefits of probiotic very well so they prescribe Yakult for health reasons," he added.
Yakult remains a frontrunner in the probiotic category globally, with over 40 million bottles of Yakult consumed daily in 40 countries and regions across the world. The newly-launched Yakult Gold's bottle contains 30 billion Lactobacillus Casei strain Shirota and is packed with added nutrients such as Vitamin D, B12, B6, Niacin and Calcium. This active bacteria is able to withstand strong gastric acids and reach the intestines alive.
"We anticipate that this new addition to the portfolio will be incredibly well-received especially bearing in mind the fact that Vitamin D deficiency is a common concern in the Middle East. By adding a bottle of Yakult Gold to one's daily routine one can improve overall health with the added nutrients whilst building immunity," he added.
- waheedabbas@khaleejtimes.com

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