Thanks to the latest report by Report Linker we are happily saying “so long!” to dairy milk. Based on the new market research, the overall dairy alternatives market reached an estimated $7.4 billion in 2016 and is projected to grow to about $14.4 billion by 2022 at a compound annual growth rate (CAGR) of 11.70 percent.

According to Report Linker’s research, coconut milk will be the fastest-growing segment during the period and North America will be the fastest growing region for dairy alternatives. Whoa! 

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The research also noted that flavored and unsweetened dairy alternatives are becoming increasingly popular due to an increase in health-conscious consumers, which comes as no surprise. With the rise in lactose intolerance, milk allergies, growing caution over hormones and antibiotics in dairy, as well as animal welfare concerns, consumers are actively seeking dairy-free alternatives and the consumption of dairy has been facing a steady decline for decades. More and more consumers are waking up to the fact the dairy industry not only has a major negative impact on the environment, but milk is also not the nutritional powerhouse that many of us once thought it was. It turns out, we can get the same nutrients from fortified plant-based milk and whole, plant-based foods.

Recent investments in the dairy-free milk space include the acquisition of White Wave, the parent company of So Delicious, by Danone, a major dairy producer.

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Report Linker’s research is an indication that a food industry dominated by dairy-free alternatives is not as far off as many would think. Investing in plant-based, vegan, and dairy-free alternatives is not only a smart move but a necessary one for food companies that want to stay in touch with consumer needs and trends.

To learn more about the environmental impact of our food choices as well as trends and developments in the plant-based food space, check out our podcast #EatForThePlanet with Nil Zacharias.

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