As the younger generation of Britons become more health and environment-conscious, the need for vegan milk also expands.

Around ¼ of the British population have ditched cow’s milk in favor of non-dairy, according to research conducted by Mintel, a firm that carries out market researches.

Out of 2,000 respondents, 33% drinks plant-based milk. These are mostly Brits who are aged 16 to 24. From 19% in 2018, the number of respondents who switched to plant-based alternatives rose to 23% this year.

However, the milk market is still highly dominated by dairy products.

Reasons for switching

Health, environment, and ethical concerns are the primary reason for the switch, according to Emma Clifford of Mintel.

Health was the primary reason why 37% of people aged 16-24 years old reduced their intake of dairy milk and replaced them with plant-based alternatives.

36% of that age group also said they switched to non-dairy because of the harmful effects of dairy farming on the environment.

Decreasing sales

The research also revealed that in 2018, 79% of this age group bought cows’ milk, but it’s down to 73% this year.

According to Emma Clifford, the trend for sales of cow’s milk is already going downwards, and with the switch of this age group to plant-based alternatives, the future does not look well for dairy products.

Clifford also said that people from this age group should be made aware of the health benefits of cow’s milk and dairy.

Health benefits

For Sam Friskey, co-founder of plant-based protein shake Fit Deli, health is the primary reason for going vegan. He believes that the persistent fatigue and burnout he usually felt at work was mainly due to his diet. When he started with his vegan diet, he began to become more aware of the environment and animal welfare.

Sam says there is a wide option of plant-based milk that does not taste good but is also healthy and nutritious. And for those who want to switch to veganism, Sam says going for plant-based milk is a great way to start the journey.

Partial switch

Even with the increasing number of people who use plant-based milk, 42% still use cow’s milk for cooking. Meanwhile, a significant 82% still prefer cow’s milk for their hot drinks.