Product typeYogurt
OwnerGeneral Mills (United States) Sodiaal (France)
Introduced1965; 59 years ago (1965)
TaglineFrench for Yum!

Yoplait (/ˈjpl/ YOH-play, French: [jɔplɛ]) is the world's largest franchise brand of yogurt. It is jointly owned by American food conglomerate General Mills and French dairy cooperative Sodiaal.


In 1964, 100,000 French farmers agreed to merge six regional dairy cooperatives in order to more efficiently market their products at the national level. In 1965, the Yoplait brand was launched as a new national brand, as a portmanteau of the brands of two member cooperatives, Yola and Coplait.[1]

The company's logo is a six-petaled flower designed by Philippe Morlighem,[2] each petal representing one of the six main cooperatives' founders. A redesigned logo, which has been slowly rolled out since the late 2000s, uses a flower with only five petals.[1]

On 18 May 2011, General Mills announced it had agreed to purchase a controlling 51% interest in the brand's main operating company Yoplait SAS, and a 50% interest in a related company owning the brand's intellectual property, with Sodiaal retaining the remainder.[3] The announcement of the completion of the acquisition was made on 1 July 2011.[4]

World franchises

Yoplait yogurt produced in Israel


In Australia, Yoplait is locally manufactured by Lion Dairy & Drinks. In November 2019, China's Mengniu Dairy announced the purchase of Lion from Japan's Kirin Holdings.[5] However, due to rising geopolitical tensions between China and Australia, Kirin and Mengniu announced the cancellation of the sale due to approval from Australian regulators being "unlikely to" materialize.[6] It uses the slogan "Yoplait; French for Yum!".[7]


In Canada, General Mills markets pre-stirred Yoplait yogurt, Minigo, Tubes, Source, Creamy, Delicieux, Yop, Yoplait Basket, Yoptimal, and Asana. In 1971, the Coopérative Agricole de Granby, which went on to become the largest dairy cooperative in the country—Agropur—launched the Yoplait brand in Canada. In 1993, Agropur and Agrifoods (the two largest dairy cooperatives in Canada) combined their yogurt and fresh cheese marketing and manufacturing activities to form Ultima Foods. Ultima Foods oversaw Yoplait brand products throughout Canada until 2012, when General Mills took over the licence (Ultima Foods continues to manufacture Yoplait products in Canada as a subcontractor, but has also launched a wholly owned rival product line, iögo).[8]


In Chile, the Yoplait brand is managed by Quillayes.


In France, the Yoplait brand is managed by Yoplait France.[9]


In Ireland, Glanbia controlled the Yoplait brand from 1973 until 2017, when its dairy processing business was offloaded to form the joint venture Glanbia Ireland, with the Glanbia Co-operative Society holding 60% ownership and Glanbia 40%.


Yoplait in Israel is managed by Tnuva, Israel's largest dairy,[10] and products are kosher. The company's drinkable yogurt comes in a 100-gram shot-style bottle with a center opening for easy gripping.[11] Yoplait-brand flavored yogurts account for 42–52% of the Israeli market.[12] Tnuva and Yoplait entered into a partnership to set up production facilities in Romania in 2007.[10] In 2009, Tnuva introduced a 500-gram (18 oz) family-size yogurt called Yoplait YYY that comes in resealable containers.[12]


Yoplait entered the Italian market in 1992 through a joint-venture between Sodiaal and Kraft Foods. At the end of the following year, Yoplait achieved a market share of 2.5%. Yoplait withdrew from the Italian market in 1999.[13]


In Mexico, the Yoplait brand is managed by Sigma Alimentos.[14]


The franchise in Norway is held by Fjordland, a brand of Tine, and has been since 1998. In 2014, Q-Meieriene filed suit against Fjordland for "allegedly copying a unique container for the Icelandic cultured milk product Skyr", as the latter uses a similar shape for one of its products.[15]


In Portugal, Yoplait was franchised to Gelgurte until 2010, when the franchising was not renewed with headquarters. It has not been made or sold in the country ever since.[16]


In 2001, the Soldier Spanish brand from Social stopped its production and commercialization in Spain closing its Alcobendas production plant.[citation needed]

South Korea

In South Korea, the Yoplait brand is managed and manufactured by Binggrae.

United Kingdom

In the United Kingdom, Yoplait UK Ltd is now 100% owned by Yoplait France.[17] In April 2009, the joint venture between Yoplait and Dairy Crest ended. Yoplait UK Ltd is based in General Mills' European head office; Harman House in Uxbridge, London, United Kingdom. Tubed yogurts are called Frubes (portmanteau of fruit and tube) in the UK, half under the Petits Filous branding and half under the Wildlife Choobs branding. Petits Filous pots, Wildlife yogurt pots, Cal-in+ pot yogurts and yogurt drinks and Yop drinking yogurt are also sold in the UK.[citation needed]

United States

The Yoplait brand first entered the United States in 1974 when it was licensed by the Michigan Cottage Cheese Company. In 1977, General Mills acquired the U.S. marketing rights to Yoplait from that company, along with a yogurt plant in Reed City, Michigan. General Mills has been the exclusive franchisee of the Yoplait brand in the United States ever since.

General Mills opened a plant in Carson, California to manufacture Yoplait for the West Coast, where it became the best-selling yogurt brand. In 1981, General Mills began selling Yoplait on the East Coast.[18]

Yoplait products are available in a variety of fruit-based flavors that come in a truncated-conical container sealed with an aluminum foil top.[18] Under the Yoplait label, General Mills also markets Trix Yogurt, based on the flavors of their breakfast cereal of the same name, and Go-Gurt, where various flavors are packaged in plastic tubes for spoonless eating; these brands are targeted to children. A probiotic line of yogurt is marketed under the brand name Yo-Plus. As of Autumn, 2023, Original Yoplait states on the package that it contains bio-engineered ingredients, which is corroborated by a general statement on its website. [19]

During the 2000s and 2010s, Yoplait steadily lost market share in the United States to Greek yogurt brands, especially Chobani. General Mills' attempts to market Greek yogurt versions of Yoplait repeatedly failed. General Mills executives carefully studied these failures, concluded that what attracted consumers to Chobani was the charming authenticity of its rags-to-riches backstory, and decided to embrace the authenticity of the Yoplait brand's French heritage.[20]

General Mills launched the Oui by Yoplait brand on 10 July 2017, by adapting and marketing an existing 20-year-old French product line, Yoplait Saveur d’Autrefois, as French-style yogurt. Oui's selling point is that unlike most yogurts which are fermented in bulk and then poured fully formed into separate containers, all the ingredients are poured into separate glass jars and separately fermented in each jar. This "pot-set" process supposedly stabilizes the yogurt without the need for additional ingredients like cornstarch or gelatin.[21][22]

United Arab Emirates

In the United Arab Emirates, the Yoplait brand is a subsidiary of Agthia Group.[23]

Community involvement

In the U.S., Yoplait participates in an annual program called "Save Lids to Save Lives" to raise money for breast cancer research. Yoplait donates ten cents per pink foil lid that are mailed to the company, but they state in fine print on all promotional materials that their donations will be capped at $2,000,000 per year. This money is donated to the Susan G. Komen Breast Cancer Foundation. Yoplait has been the primary sponsor of Race for the Cure, a marathon held to raise additional research money, since 2001.

The American franchise of Yoplait added a rim on the bottom of the yogurt containers to keep animals such as skunks from accidentally getting their heads caught. A label was added to the container stating: "Protect Wildlife: Crush Cup Before Disposal."[24]


The 2011 documentary Pink Ribbons, Inc. reported that some products sold under the "Save Lids to Save Lives" campaign had previously contained milk from cows treated with bovine somatotropin, a growth hormone banned in many nations for its possible link to diseases in humans, until the company agreed to remove it.[25][26]

A 2012 television advertisement for Yoplait prompted criticism from the National Eating Disorders Association due to its portrayal of a woman making difficult food choices. The company announced within a few days of the complaint that they would pull the ad, saying, "We aren't sure that everyone saw the ad that way, but if anyone did, that was not our intent and is cause for concern."[27]

Since at least 1998, Yoplait has been the target of a campaign by animal advocates, including the Humane Society, to redesign its traditional tapered cup design because small animals can easily get their heads stuck inside and then suffocate or die from dehydration.[28][29]

See also


  1. ^ a b Olmsted, Monte (24 September 2015). "How Yoplait got its start | A Taste of General Mills". A Taste of General Mills. Archived from the original on 14 May 2022. Retrieved 29 April 2021. The Yoplait name emerged in 1965 when the French dairy farmers from those six co-ops dropped their own respective brands, and came up with a moniker derived from the contraction of two of Sodima's more recognizable member co-ops – Yola and Coplait. [...] The six-petal flower – which lost a petal in 2009 – is the one most people equate with Yoplait, as each petal represented the six founding co-ops.
  2. ^ "Pourquoi la petite fleur ne se fane jamais? @ Bravo La Petite Fleur". Bravolapetitefleur.com. 11 December 2009. Archived from the original on 24 March 2010. Retrieved 19 February 2014.
  3. ^ "General Mills announces definitive agreements to acquire yogurt interests". Archived from the original on 19 April 2013.
  4. ^ "General Mills completes Yoplait acquisition". Archived from the original on 11 April 2013.
  5. ^ "Mengniu buys Lion Dairy and Drinks". dairyreporter.com. 25 November 2019. Retrieved 3 January 2020.
  6. ^ "$430 million milk deal called off as tensions rise between China and Australia". CNN. 25 August 2020.
  7. ^ "Yoplait". Archived from the original on 17 March 2012. Retrieved 25 March 2012.
  8. ^ Yoplait SAS (8 May 2012). "Ultima and Yoplait resolve issues, successfully reach agreement" (Press release). CNW. Archived from the original on 20 January 2013. Retrieved 11 August 2012.
  9. ^ "Yoplait, Goûtons la vie du bon côté". Yoplait (in French). Retrieved 10 December 2021.
  10. ^ a b Tnuva Launches Yoplait Yoghurts Archived 3 March 2010 at the Wayback Machine.
  11. ^ 700+ words. "A clever packaging innovation from Yoplait in Israel makes milk more distinctive and consumer-friendly". Highbeam Research. Archived from the original on 2 November 2012. Retrieved 19 February 2014.((cite web)): CS1 maint: numeric names: authors list (link)
  12. ^ a b Meirav Crystal (24 March 2009). "Tnuva introduces family-sized Yoplait". ynetnews.com.
  13. ^ borislimpopo (10 January 2008). "Ma con tutto lo yogurt che c'è, c'era proprio bisogno di Yoplait?". Sbagliando s'impera (in Italian).
  14. ^ "Brand Portfolio | Sigma Alimentos". Retrieved 10 December 2021.
  15. ^ Uk, Informa (15 October 2021). "Yoplait vs Skyr: Court battle launched over shape of dairy product container". www.i-law.com. Retrieved 10 December 2021.
  16. ^ "Yoplait". Mahalo.com. 11 January 1999. Retrieved 19 February 2014.
  17. ^ "Yoplait UK Limited: Private Company Information - Businessweek". Investing.businessweek.com. Archived from the original on 10 November 2013. Retrieved 19 February 2014.
  18. ^ a b Miller, Larry (11 March 1981). "Yogurt From France Moves East in U.S." The New York Times. p. C12. Retrieved 17 October 2020.
  19. ^ "Do you use GMO ingredients in your product?". General Mills. Retrieved 3 October 2023. (archived by Wayback machine March 2021 and April 2022 but archive is blank)
  20. ^ Duhigg, Charles (26 June 2017). "Yoplait Learns to Manufacture Authenticity to Go With Its Yogurt". The New York Times. New York. p. B1. Retrieved 12 October 2020.
  21. ^ Reilly, Mark (26 June 2017). "General Mills unveils Oui, French yogurt counterpunch to Greek rivals". Minneapolis/St. Paul Business Journal. American City Business Journals. Retrieved 12 October 2020.
  22. ^ Mohan, Anne Marie (13 August 2017). "Glass jars enable yogurt's thick, creamy texture". Packaging World. PMMI Media Group.
  23. ^ "Agthia - For The Better". Retrieved 10 December 2021.
  24. ^ "Skunk Stink! (Yoplait container hazard)". Science World. 11 January 1999.
  25. ^ Anderson, John (15 September 2011). "Pink Ribbons, Inc". Variety. Retrieved 31 January 2012.
  26. ^ Heinrich, Jeff (31 January 2012). "It's a fine line between fundraising, feminism". Regina Leader-Post. Postmedia News. Archived from the original on 9 February 2012. Retrieved 31 January 2012.
  27. ^ Stampler, Laura (15 June 2011). "Yoplait Pulls Ad Said To Promote Eating Disorders". The Huffington Post. Retrieved 15 April 2013.
  28. ^ Cunningham, Kaily (27 September 2015). "Humane society official says Yoplait yogurt containers are killing small animals". Fox 8. Retrieved 1 October 2018.
  29. ^ Hanson, Hilary (23 September 2015). "Yoplait Yogurt Cups Have Been Killing Small Animals For Years". HuffPost Canada. Retrieved 1 October 2018.