In the last decade, the alternative-milk sector has gradually come under the spotlight – and for a good reason. Further, plant-based beverages have attracted the attention of the millennials in recent years owing to a host of health benefits associated to them. Over the last decade, a noteworthy change in lifestyle patterns was observed owing to growing awareness regarding health and well-being among individuals. Further, in the last couple of years, oat drinks such as oat milk have captured the interest of the masses and emerged as one of the most nutritious plant-based beverages. Oat milk is an ideal alternative for individuals who are dairy-averse and lactose intolerant. Further, the thick consistency, texture, and nutritional value are some of the major factors that have influenced the popularity of oat beverages in the recent years and, as per the current observable consumer patterns, the trend is here to stay in the upcoming years.
An Environment-friendly Plant-based Milk
Over the last two to three years, the millennial population has played an imperative role in shaping the overall landscape of the food and beverage sector. The exponential growth in demand for oat milk in the last couple of years is a perfect example of how consumers impact the market. Although other variants of plant-based milks such as soy milk and almond milk have gained significant momentum, oat milk has made the cut in terms of popularity and sales. In the current scenario, the adoption of oat milk in baristas and cafes has significantly increased in the developed regions such as North America and Europe. Modern day consumers are highly conscious of the environment and prefer buying products that are environment-friendly. Further, oats are ecologically-friendly as they require less water to cultivate – a major factor influencing the modern day consumer. Moreover, as oats require significantly less amount of herbicides compared to other crops, they are relatively safer to consume. The consistency of oat milk is incredibly similar to the consistency of cow milk – another factors that is appealing to the consumers.
Oats Have Come a Long Way – From Farms to Supermarket Shelves
Sensing the growing demand for oat beverages in recent years, several brands are jumping onto the bandwagon and introducing new products to the market. In addition, to fulfil the rising demand for oat milk among consumers, brands are diversifying their product range. For instance, Quaker, an oatmeal brand owned by PepsiCo, announced that the company will launch a new range of oat-based beverages by 2019. In addition, in order to differentiate the new product from traditional dairy products, PepsiCo prefers to refer the new product as an oat beverage instead of oat milk. The company also specified that the new line of oat-beverages contains beta-glucan, a soluble fiber that decreases the chances of heart diseases according to a few studies. The demand for oat milk in the US has witnessed a commendable growth and prominent oat milk brands including, Oatly and Pacific Foods are making oat milk more accessible. In the current scenario, oat milk and oat beverages are making their way towards supermarkets and retail stores across North America and Europe. The trend is expected to continue as oat milk has gained significant traction in the last few years. In addition, the influx of new players into the plant-based beverage landscape is expected to boost the current and future prospects of the oat drinks market. Moreover, consumer preference for oat milk over almond and soy milk is a major driver that will play an instrumental role in shaping the oat drinks market in the foreseeable future
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