Generates body warmth to drink

Lots of fruit or just aroma?

Whether creamy, reduced-fat, classic, with fruit preparation or crispy balls in a folding corner, as a supposedly healthy probiotic feel-good product or a sweet, colorfully decorated eye candy in frozen form: yogurt is one of the oldest dairy products and one of the most varied.

Every German eats around 17 kilograms of yoghurt a year on average, which corresponds to around two 150 g cups per week. Fruit yogurt is the top selling yogurt. The most popular are flavor mixes and seasonal products such as raspberry-lemon or baked apple-cinnamon. Strawberry and cherry follow in second and third place of the coveted yoghurt varieties. The “white line”, to which scientists count dairy products and thus also yoghurt, is therefore rather colorful. In addition to drinking milk, fruit yoghurts are the product group with the highest sales among dairy products. The customer seems to be price-conscious: half of the total sales of dairy products came from the discounters last year.

From the Thracian lambskin sack to the German refrigerated shelf

There is no scientific consensus on the origin of yogurt. Some suspect that it first appeared in the 6th to 4th centuries BC. BC in the lambskin sacks of the Thracians, the indigenous people of the Balkan island. During their rides, they carried milk with them, which came into contact with the germs present in the fur sacks. Due to the body temperature and the mixing vibrations, the bacteria were able to multiply optimally and thus convert the milk into yoghurt. The Thracians valued yogurt because of its long shelf life. It is possible that other peoples - such as the nomadic Turkic peoples of Central Asia - invented yogurt at the same time or even earlier. In the respective languages ​​the word “yoghurt” means the same thing, namely as much as “solid / fermented milk”.

Today, specific yogurt products can be found in many cultures. There is, for example, the salty ayran from Anatolia and the Caucasus, the Indian lassi, which is often mixed with fruits and which is also found in other cultures, the fatty Greek yogurt or the relatively sour Bulgarian yogurt. In this country, however, it took a long time for yoghurt to become part of the menu. Then as now, however, yogurt was expected to have a health-promoting and slimming effect.

Expectations of health and beauty helped the breakthrough

As early as the 20th century, scientists discovered that bacteria can also have a positive effect on the human body. In 1885, the German pediatrician Theodor Escherich (1857-1911) differentiated between intestinal bacteria that were dangerous for humans and useful ones. The most important intestinal bacterium bears his name: Escherichia coli. The Russian researcher Ilya Ilyich Metschnikow (1845-1916) dealt with the fight between these beneficial and disease-causing bacteria. In 1908 he received the Nobel Prize for the discovery of the immune defense of white blood cells against harmful bacteria. A year earlier, in a publication, he linked the high life expectancy of certain Caucasian and Bulgarian ethnic groups with their preference for acidified and fermented dairy products. The resulting knowledge that a high number of lactobacilli contained in these products in the intestinal flora is beneficial for health has persisted to this day.

At the beginning of the 20th century, natural yoghurt began to be sold in health food stores in health food stores. From the 1920s onwards, products with certain bacteria (e.g. Lactobacillus acidophilus), which survive gastric acid and thus can develop their effect in the intestine, were also sold. However, it was not until the 1930s that a market for yogurt emerged as refrigeration capabilities improved.

Yoghurt only experienced a real boom in the 1960s, when fruit yoghurts hit the market. They promised to support a low-calorie diet in accordance with the very slim ideal of beauty. Since then, yoghurt has become an indispensable part of German supermarkets. Between 2001 and 2008 there were 2,000 different yoghurts on the market - yoghurt is therefore one of the most diverse foods in Germany.

How much fruit is there?

In the supermarkets, the consumer has a large selection of yogurts with fruits. But there are differences, depending on the exact name of the yogurt, how much fruit there must be. In Germany there is no legal regulation for the designation "fruit yoghurt" or "yoghurt with fruit preparation" - but there is an internal federal guideline for food law and food science.

Accordingly, an as "Fruit yoghurt" designated product contain at least six percent fresh fruit. The only exceptions are fruits with a particular taste intensity such as lemons - two percent is sufficient here.

A smaller proportion of fruit is allowed "Yoghurt with fruit preparation" exhibit. Only 3.5 percent fresh fruit (or 1.5 percent of a flavor-intensive fruit) must be present here.

If the proportion of fresh fruit is below 3.5 percent, the product may only be used as "Fruit-flavored yogurt"sold. Unlike yoghurts with more fruit, images of fruits are not common.

Where the fruit is missing, it is not uncommon for aromas to be added to create an acceptable taste experience. The organic yoghurts often do not contain any flavoring additives.

There are also differences among the flavors. So will for example "Natural strawberry flavor" Obtained from the strawberry and at least 95 percent must come from the strawberry. The remaining five percent may be obtained from other natural substances. "Natural Aroma“On the other hand, it does not come from strawberries, but is obtained from natural substances such as yeast or bacteria. "Strawberry flavor"is a chemically defined substance with aroma properties. A strawberry has several hundred substances that together create the typical strawberry taste. In a “strawberry aroma”, on the other hand, only a few of these flavor substances need to be present. Perhaps this is one reason why it is not that easy to blindly taste the type of yoghurt without any pieces of fruit in the yoghurt. Try our taster at home with different yoghurts.