Dairy farmers are indignant about beverages calling themselves milks when they are actually made of oats or almonds or sunflower seeds. Even worse, these impostors have been draining away at the market share of what cows produce.
But if you can’t beat ’em, join ’em. While farmers loudly voice their complaints about alt-dairy products, conventional processors are starting to churn them out alongside traditional milk, aiming to cash in on their fast-growing popularity in the U.S. One of the country’s oldest dairies, HP Hood, has released a product called Planet Oat. The giant dairy-cooperative Organic Valley is the distributor for a line of almond-based drinks made by New Barn Organics, and a dairy processor handles the packing.
“We wouldn’t exist without Organic Valley,” said Ted Robb, chief executive officer of New Barn, which makes the almond drinks and other nut-based products, including what it calls a buttery spread. “They have a very hard time calling it milk. That really, really bothers them. But they do understand we’re thinking the same way around organic and deeper values.”
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