A new survey has revealed that more than a quarter (28 per cent) of 18-24 year olds have ditched dairy, and are opting for plant-based alternatives instead.
The study conducted by ComRes on behalf of the BBC found that although this age group is consuming more dairy alternatives, but that the general consensus on dairy hasn’t changed – 5 per cent are consuming more, 10 per cent are having less and only 2 per cent have gone vegan.
The BBC spoke to Bekki Ramsay, a 23 year old from Newcastle, for her opinion on why more people her age are opting for dairy alternatives. She said: “I feel like my generation is a lot more open to trying. I know that buying alternative milk is better for the world, but it’s more a health choice for me.
“It’s impossible to escape from what’s going on in this world and how what we do every day has an impact on the environment.”
She added: “A lot of people, even my friends, are more interested in knowing the environmental impact than health concerns, or what tastes better with a latte.”
It was also found that 16 per cent of 25-34 year olds have also ditched dairy, and are now choosing plant-based milk alternatives – something that market research firm, Mintel also found in the three months leading up to February 2018.
Associate director for food and drink at Mintel, Emma Clifford, said: “Heightened awareness of the detrimental impact dairy production has on the environment, alongside concerns over animal ethics, has given rise to a new trend called ‘reducetarian’.
“This sees adopters significantly reduce their consumption of animal products and is a key driver in the strong performance of the dairy-free and dairy alternatives segments.”
Whilst this group of consumers labelling themselves as ‘reducetarians’ aren’t going fully vegan, the participants of the survey cited that their concerns for their health were the main reason for removing dairy from their diets, with ethical and environmental concerns also being prominent reasons.