Sales of oat milk in the United States have grown by 686 percent in 2019—and more than 1,946 percent over the last two years—according to recently released data. Trade group Plant Based Food Association (PBFA) and advocacy group The Good Food Institute (GFI) commissioned market research firm SPINS to compile data about the US food industry for a 52-week period ending in December 2019. SPINS found that the plant-based food industry is now worth $5 billion, with plant-based milk now accounting for 14 percent of sales in the milk category as a whole, dairy included. While almond milk remains the most popular vegan milk at $1.3 billion in sales, oat milk ($84 million in sales) is the fastest growing milk option in the plant-based milk category—which grew five percent during the research period while dairy milk sales remained stagnant. Of all US households, 41.3 percent purchase plant-based milk, which equates to nearly 53 million households. “Shifting consumer values have created a favorable market for plant-based foods, which have significantly outpaced overall grocery sales increases for three years running, making plant-based foods a growth engine for both manufacturers and retailers,” Caroline Bushnell, GFI Associate Director of Corporate Engagement, said. “This is really only the beginning: plant-based foods will continue to expand rapidly across the store in response to demand as consumers increasingly switch to foods that match their changing values and desire for more sustainable options. We expect further acceleration in 2020.” Overall, more than 620 million units of plant-based milk were sold last year.
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