Dairy alternative products are substitutes for cow’s milk, which are processed from cereals, nuts, and seeds of certain plants. This food group is a vital part of a healthy and balanced diet as they are good sources of calcium, protein, and vitamins, which are necessary for normal bone growth and tooth development. The dairy alternatives can be used as milk in cooking and baking. Demand for dairy alternatives is driven by the low-fat content and low cholesterol concentration in it. Increase in obese and vegan population and rising health awareness among public globally are expected to propel the market growth.
Dairy Alternative Market Taxonomy
On the basis of source, the global market is classified as:
- Almond Milk
- Soy Milk
- Rice Milk
- Oat Milk
- Coconut Milk
On the basis of formulation type, the global market is classified into:
- Plain Sweetened
- Flavor Sweetened
- Plain Unsweetened
- Flavor Unsweetened
On the basis of distribution channel, the global market is classified into:
- Convenience Retailers
- Health food stores
On the basis of application, the global market is classified into:
Soy milk accounts for a maximum market share in global dairy alternatives market as it is widely used in refreshment drinks. Dairy alternatives are used in beverages such as energy drink and mixed fruit drink that are being popularly consumed. Thus, the high demand in beverages industry is expected to drive the dairy alternatives market during the forecast period.
Dairy Alternative Market Outlook- Asia Pacific is the fastest growing region
In Asia Pacific, increase in number of dairy-allergic consumers is expected to boost the revenue of the dairy alternatives market. Increasing demand for lactose-free food products and consumer preference toward nutritional food are also projected to fuel the market growth. The nutritional value of animal milk is same as that of plant-based milk.
In addition to lactose-free, dairy alternatives are also sources of amino acids, fibers, and vitamin B, which are essential for human body, hence dairy alternatives market is expected to witness an exponential growth over the forecast period.
With dietary diversification and high investments in R&D, the manufacturers are focusing on innovations to expand their portfolio and to achieve a competitive edge. In December 2016, Organic Valley, one of the leading companies of dairy alternatives products made headlines for expanding its production in Mid-Atlantic. In April 2017, a successful entrepreneur, Adam Lowry teamed up with chemical engineers and launched first yellow pea-based milk, Ripple, which claims to have more protein as compared to almond milk.
North America accommodates various dairy alternative beverage companies who are rigorously engaged in product development. In 2013, The Hain Celestial Group launched “DREAM”, a non-dairy sunflower drink with new flavor.
Availability of low-fat conventional milk & low cholesterol milk and high cost of dairy alternative milk products are some of the restraints for the growth of global dairy alternatives market.
Some of the key players in the global dairy alternatives market includes The Whitewave Foods Company, SunOpta, Hain Celestial, Pascual Group, Elden’s Fresh Foods & Media Solutions Corp., Healthy Brands Collective, Earth’s Own Food Company Inc., Blue Diamond Growers, Freedom Foods Group, Oatly AB, Stremick’s Heritage Foods, and Vitasoy Holdings Limited.
- Healthy brands collective has acquired Cardium’s To Go Brand. This was done with the objective of increasing the overall brand portfolio for the dairy alternative. The acquisition was done through an asset purchase of USD 2.5 million by exchange of preferred equity position in healthy brands.
- Stremick’s Heritage Foods along with Disney Consumer Products had collectively launched a new milk beverage line. This new dairy alternative product supports the development of eye and brain and is also considered as an excellent source of calcium, for strong teeth and bones. This was the first initiative for launching a product as a part of the healthy non-dairy beverages.
- In the year 2017, the Sunrise Grovers Inc., a subsidiary of the SunOpta Inc. has issued voluntary recall of frozen organic dark sweet pitted cherry products. This was done as the product was seen as contaminated with an organism called Listeria monocytogenes, responsible for causing infections in young children.