Non-dairy products have been around for a long time, serving the lactose intolerant as well as consumers who choose to avoid or limit dairy intake for religious, dietary, or other lifestyle reasons, as Packaged Facts explores in the brand new report The Yogurt Market and Yogurt Innovation, 3rd Edition. In recent years, the rising popularity of vegan, vegetarian, and flexitarian diets has incentivized food companies to explore new, novel products and approaches to reaching consumers. For example, plant-based dairy alternatives in various food categories have expanded to include several nut- and legume-based formulations beyond the familiar quartet of soy, rice, coconut, and almond. These new varieties are made from cashews, hazelnuts, macadamias, peas, peanuts, pecans, tiger nuts, bananas, barley, cassava, flax, hemp, oats, potatoes, and quinoa.
Dairy-Free, Plant-Based Yogurts Trending
For the yogurt industry specifically, the trend has brought to store shelves dairy-free, plant-based yogurt featuring ingredients such as soy, coconut, almonds, and cashews, as well as pea-based yogurt. Oregon-based So Delicious Dairy Free offers a certified vegan, plant-based line of coconut milk yogurt alternative in ten different flavors. The probiotic cultures are Non-GMO Project Verified, Certified Gluten-Free, and Certified Vegan and are also free-from artificial flavors, colors, hydrogenated oils, trans-fats, and cholesterol.
But So Delicious Dairy Free isn’t the only player in the from-free yogurt segment. Other major players include:
- Good Karma Foods offers a line of vegan-friendly, dairy-free yogurt made with flax milk. The yogurt is also free-from nuts, soy, and gluten, while providing 5-6 grams of plant-based protein and a serving of omega-3 healthy fats. The product is available in both traditional yogurt containers and as a dairy-free probiotic drinkable yogurt.
- Back in December 2015, Ruby's Naturals introduced its Non-Dairy Fruit & Veggie Blend, which is gluten-, dairy- and GMO-free. The product also features no added sugar, as well as being vegan and kosher. The product is positioned as a better-for-you alternative to yogurt with “a creamy blend of veggies, fruit and plant-based protein—including creamed coconut, chia seeds, and pea protein.”
- Forager Project markets a new line of organic, cashew-based, dairy-free yogurt alternatives that are available exclusively at Whole Foods Market. Meanwhile, Ripple is a new line of dairy-free products made from yellow peas. The company plans to launch a pea-based, Greek style yogurt in late 2017.
Expect to see more of this trend throughout 2018.
Be sure to visit Packaged Facts' 'Dairy and Dairy Alternatives' curated page for comlpete coverage of the dairy industry.
-- by Daniel Granderson, communications manager