RIP the era of cow milk, helloooo alternative milks

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Cow’s milk sales are declining as more consumers flock to the alternative milk aisle in their local grocery store. People substitute cow milk for reasons such as allergies, concerns with the risk of cancer or diabetes, lactose intolerance, inability to produce a sufficient amount of breastmilk for their infants, and dietary restrictions such as veganism.

The creativity of alternative milks don’t stop at soy, producers are stocking the shelves with almond, hemp seed, flaxseed, oat, cashew, even rice milk. Almond milk rose to fame in the early 2000’s as consumers seeked lactose-free, organic, flavourful, vegan options to supplement dairy in their diet. Consumer researchers say that 40% of consumer’s top priority while purchasing alternative milk is its flavor.

To get a little more information about the behind-the-scenes production of alternative milk options, we contacted Erin Hendricks, who owns her very own alternative milk company, Sammy’s Milk.

When asked about the biggest challenges her company faces, Hendricks said, “Literally trying to stay afloat in a world dominated by pharmaceutical companies.  I am constantly working to appease FDA and keep up a high quality product; a product never seen before on the shelves here in the U.S.”

Since Hendrick’s company caters towards breastfeeding mothers, her customers are generally, “trying to avoid both soy and cow milk like crazy…the majority of them have tried nut milks and new milks they are making from mostly legumes, and I think pea milk will be next.” As Hendricks has developed her company she says, “I have already seen beet milk. People will keep going down the road of legumes because nut milks are on the CDC’s allergen list.”

Hendricks was also able to explain why her alternative milk options have more nutritional value than cow milk. She says, “Cow milk on the whole is more difficult to digest, usually contains a host of antibiotics and sadly, growth hormones. It also has to be homogenized so our bodies can literally break down the protein & fat globules. Goat milk is more similar, thus the milk does not need to be molecularly modified for human digestion.  We are one of the only countries in the world that consume for cow than goat milk.”

We took to the Webb community to get their take on alternative milks!

Skyler Rivera & Payton Williams

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