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The surprising reason why this yogurt drink is flying off store shelves

With another original hit, Netflix is making audiences hungry once again.
by Erica Chayes Wida / / Source: TODAY
Yakult Honsha Co. Probiotic Dairy Drink As Shares Declines After Danone's $1.8 Billion Share Sale Plan
Justin Chin / Bloomberg/Getty Images

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To all the yogurt drinks I've loved before ...

A recent boom in sales for a Japanese yogurt drink that's been around for decades is proving, once again, that being featured in a popular Netflix program can be a boon for business.

After a Yakult-like product, a probiotic dairy drink, made an appearance in the recently released Netflix original romantic comedy, "To All the Boys I've Loved Before," it's been flying off supermarket shelves.

The drink appears in the flick about a shy, 16-year-old girl navigating her feelings of love and loss. Although the brand isn't mentioned in the movie — and it's referred to as a "Korean yogurt smoothie" — watchful social media users identified the bottle's shape and signature red tin foil top as being Yakult.

Since the movie's release on Aug. 17, Bloomberg reported that the drink's stock has increased 2.6 percent and the company expects to see even higher sales in the coming weeks.

But what exactly is it?

Yakult is a probiotic yogurt drink that contains 50 calories and 11 grams of sugar per 2.7-ounce bottle. It's made from water, sugar, skim milk powder, glucose, natural flavors and Lactobacillus casei shirota. Though the sugar content is relatively modest compared to some yogurts aimed at kids (and adults), the serving size for Yakult (which is available at Walmart and Amazon) is one bottle a day for kids.

A lot has been written about the potential health benefits of probiotics in recent years but the healthy, living bacterias exist in various fermented foods and beverages, from yogurt and kefir, to sauerkraut, kimchi and kombucha. Probiotics have been shown boost immunity and help fight against illnesses like the common cold, keep urinary tract infections at bay and may even prevent stomach bloating. Probiotics can also be consumed in supplement form and are usually found in the refrigerated section of health food stores.

In the movie "To All the Boys I've Loved Before," teen heartthrob Peter Kavinsky (played by Noah Centineo) vouched for Yakult's tasty flavor on screen, but does he actually like the drink?

"I don't drink it in real life, but you better believe that I was finishing all the canisters for Kitty on set," Centineo told TODAY. "Like, we were in the car and she'd have to drink a little bit and then we'd have to reset and get a new one and I would pound them. I drank, like, 30. They're so good."

However, he added that he doesn't go "out of his way" to get them, "'Cause then it would be a problem. Then, I'd be, like, 90 percent Yakult."

Even if Centineo doesn't go to great lengths to find Yakult, his character has sparked a viral obsession with the probiotic drink.

One tweeter says she grew up drinking Yakult in Taiwan, but after seeing its iconic red foil top in the Netflix movie she started stocking up again.

Some tweeters are searching far and wide to get their hands on a bottle.

Others tout having known about the drink for ages and vouch for it being "delicious."

And one tweeter gave the rest of the world a language lesson on what "yakult" actually means.

Looks like random rom-com appearances is one way to get teens to eat their probiotics.

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