Ditching dairy

February 12, 2019

Plant-based milk products are fast becoming a hot trend, even among dairy consumers. Jessica Pook discovers why

It wasn’t long ago that alternative milks were stored only as a courtesy for those that suffered from dairy allergies – and even then the offering was sparse. But in recent years almond, oat, rice, coconut and soy milks have been leading the way in the dairy-free market, a trend that is expected to increase by 50% in the next four years.

And it’s not just because of the increase in flexitarian diets, consumers are becoming more conscious than ever about health and it has been suggested that a plant-based diet can help prevent obesity, heart disease, stroke and even some cancers. Animal welfare and the environmental impact of eating animal foods is also a contributing factor and some dairy consumers admit to just preferring the taste.

Power of the plant
Plenish is a plant-powered drinks brand producing alternative nut milks made from organic, sustainably-sourced nuts, filtered water and a pinch of salt. The range includes almond, cashew, oat, hazelnut and coconut. Plenish prides itself on maximising plant-fuelled nutrition and minimising our impact on the planet, it also uses three times as many nuts as the market average.

Alternatively, Botanic Lab has produced a range of plant milks with additional uplifting functional botanicals. The single-serve drinks come in three flavours and give a healthy energy boost
throughout the day.

The Plantmilk1 coffee/damiana offering combines cold brew coffee with damiana leaf, revered for its anxiety- reducing property. Plantmilk2 contains chocolate/yerba mate which has energy-inducing qualities and helps maintain mental focus and clarity. And Plantmilk3 matcha with a citrus twist of raw yuzu and lemon releases caffeine slowly and theanine and magnesium aid relaxation.

Rebekah Hall, founder of Botanic Lab, says: “Our Plantmilks are packed with delicious plant-based ingredients. Whether you are in need of a quick and easy (but nutritious) start to the day, an alternative to your morning latte, or an afternoon sweet (but saintly) pick-me-up.

“There is a growing recognition of both the health benefits and the reduced impact on the environment of following a plant-based diet. Historically veganism has been very niche, but we are increasingly seeing a much wider group of people adopting aspects of a vegan diet, if not adopting it fully. •