Abstract
Communicating the potential health benefits of probiotic food products to consumers is essential for success in the market, regardless of brand. Little other than the expected health benefit weighs into the consumer’s decision to opt for a probiotic food product rather than a less expensive traditional one. As revealed in this report, persistent ignorance and scepticism point to the need to inform consumers about the health benefits of probiotics. Up to the present, the health claim has been regarded as the principal tool for achieving this. However, strict regulatory standards make it extremely difficult and onerous to substantiate such claims in the case of probiotic food products. This situation has spawned various marketing tactics designed to by-pass health claim legislation. This work points out the pitfalls of those practices and suggests legitimate strategies for communicating health benefits in the absence of an approved health claim. Application of recognized contemporaneous and lag econometric models supports the feasibility of the proposed strategies, which can be used alone or in conjunction with to the traditional health claim approach.

Key words: probiotics, health claims, health communication, consumer awareness, endorsement seals, consumer education.

ISSN 1929-2503

Official publication of the
Institute for the development of probiotic food products



Probiotic
Intelligentsia
Alternatives for communicating the health benefits of probiotics

Martin Macouzet
Institute for the development of probiotic food products, Quebec, Canada

Article first published online 01 October 2012


Probiotic Intelligentsia
Volume 1, Number 1
pages 1-12
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