Environmentally-friendly plant-based milk on the rise

Around 37% of 16-24 year olds who have reduced their cow milk intake say they have done so as a result of environmental factors

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Environmentally-friendly plant-based milk is on the rise, with a quarter of Brits now drinking it instead of normal milk.

That’s according to a new report from market research firm Mintel, which surveyed 2,000 people across the UK about their intake of products such as almond, soy, oat and coconut milk.

The biggest drinkers of these non-dairy milks are 16-24 year olds, with around a third drinking them – health is the reason why 37% of this group said they’d decided to drink less cow milk, with 36% suggesting their decision is a result of environmental factors, as they believe dairy farming isn’t good for the environment.

The proportion of this group buying cows milk at all has fallen from 79% in 2018 to 73% in 2019.

Despite its rising popularity, plant-based milks still make up just 4% of the market, with 96% of milk sales last year coming from cows.

Plant-based milk’s use in cooking and hot drinks remains limited – only a quarter use alternative milks in cooking, compared to 42% of traditional milk drinkers, while only 42% of plant-based milk customers use plant-milks in hot drinks, compared to 82% of cow milk drinkers.

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