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Young consumers are impacting the dairy industry by opting for more plant-based alternatives. 

Oct 08 2022

Young consumers are impacting the dairy industry by opting for more plant-based alternatives. According to RBC Capital Markets, over 40% of plant-based consumers are choosing plant-based dairy alternatives because “they think it’s a healthier option.” More young consumers are opting for oat milk specifically because of its environmental impact: oat milk requires less water to produce compared to other options like almond milk. Young consumers also say it has a “better taste profile and foaming ability when mixed with coffee.” Their data shows that oat milk drinkers “tend to be young, educated, and living in urban areas.” This desire for plant-based milk is mostly driven by a larger number of people with dairy restrictions as well as brand exposure in food service partnerships. For example, Oatly and Starbucks launched their successful drink, the iced brown sugar oat milk shaken espresso. However, dairy isn’t done for good, in fact the industry is seeing growth in butter, whey, and cheese. YPulse’s Cooking and Diets report data shows that 20% of Gen Z and Millennials drink plant-based beverages regularly and over a quarter who don’t say that they are interested. (Food Institute)