Yakult Honsha Co. has launched its pro-biotic dairy drink Yakult in its first mainstream market in the US.

The Tokyo-based company said yesterday (24 September) that its Yakult brand will initially be made available in major supermarkets across Southern California before expanding to all grocery chains throughout the state.

Yakult Honsha will support the launch with a TV, radio and print advertising campaign featuring the tagline 'Every day. For Every Body', in an effort to raise consumer awareness about the benefits of the beverage.

CA-based Yakult USA vice president and COO of Torrance Teruo Tabuchi said: "More than 25m people in 30 countries around the world enjoy Yakult on a daily basis. We hope that Americans will also incorporate our delicious product into their diets in pursuit of a healthy lifestyle. We continue to carry out the goals set forth by our company's founder  - to educate every one in the world about preventive health."

Previously, Yakult's corporate subsidiary, Yakult USA, only distributed the beverage to Asian and Hispanic grocery stores in the US, despite 8m bottles of the 'friendly bacteria' being consumed daily in Japan.