Although the controversy is growing between vegans and other vegetarianism for vegan milk. For some people, the concept of vegan milk may be new. And the curiosity to know how it is different from the cow milk which we use in our day-to-day life. As well as using it for tea/coffee to make some delicious recipes with a charm of numerous dairy products in it.

With the growing demand for vegan milk in the market, dairy products manufacturers are now shifting to vegan milk. Since people are now having concerns about cow milk production. Which is unethical on a large scale production by means of injecting cattle with steroids.

Another issue that concerns them is when the cattle are not worth producing milk. Then they are sold to another industry. Or where they exploit in the worst way that one can think of.

Vegan milk in its most initial form is plant milk. Commercially it refers to soy, almond, coconut, oat & rice milk. Technically, if we say vegan milk is that milk which we get from milk source plant products viz. coconut, oats, soy, and rice, etc.

Vegan milk resembles cow milk but its manufacturing comes under non-dairy beverages. Add additional products to this milk to enhance the aroma and flavor in it.

Though this plant milk appears to be very creamy. Yet it is far different in taste from cow milk. As you can feel the taste of almond if it is almond milk or coconut if it is coconut milk. All is that you can easily differentiate between vegan milk and cow milk. Since vegan milk is less dense than cow milk.

Commercially packing & packaging vegan milk in containers is the same as that of dairy milk. In 2018, around 20 plants were useful in manufacturing, almond, soy, and coconut. Also, they were the highest-selling plant product worldwide. And in 2018 itself the vegan milk market was at an estimate of 16 Bn USD globally.

Note: In some countries in Europe, labeling the “milk” word is necessary on the packaging. As consumers are not able to distinguish between the different varieties of milk. Due to minute labeling on the packaging.

Though vegan milk is a plant juice, in which plants soaks & process further to produce it. That’s why the texture, test, and quality are of such a standard. Hence, it matches close to conventional dairy milk.

Different Type of Vegan Milk Alternatives

Nowadays, Vegan milk is available in different flavors such as:

Soy Milk

Consider Soya bean as the highest source of protein. As it soaks in water and upon swelling in several hours, it is ground. After this, filters the ground mixture through a strainer. However, the liquid solution we get after the filtering process is soy milk.

Neither this soy milk is too thick nor too thin & consider it as a very good source of protein potassium. Adding these flavors enhances the taste. Like adding sugar with vitamin A & D.

Looking for soy milk is not an issue. Because it is easily accessible in markets and dairy stores.

Almond Milk

Another option in the vegan milk we have is almond milk. As the name suggests, this milk is made from almonds. Soak these almonds in water and upon swelling, then grind them. Afterward, add the paste with water upon filtering to make almond milk. So, easily you can prepare this milk at home.

Preparing Almond milk with a nutty flavor is thin in comparison to soy milk. But it has a sufficient amount of Vitamin D & E along with calcium.

Coconut Milk

Coconut milk is extracted from the coconut. Firstly, soak dry coconut in water & then grind it to extract the juice from it. This juice is ideal for cooking and baking also. Thus, giving an exotic aroma of coconut to the food. That’s why coconut supplements our diet with Vitamin D, B2, B12, and calcium.

Therefore, if you are a coconut freak then you will surely be going to love this milk. Although if talking to other conventional dairy milk consumers then this may be pretty awkward.

Rice Milk

Rice milk is a unique milk product that is consumed generally in South East Asia and is prominent in Japan and Korea. Similarly, you can extract the milk from the rice in which rice is soaked in water. After that, grind it to extract the milk.

Other than making tea, rice milk is also useful in making oat milk use and sauces.

Moreover, it is the best option for those who are prone to lactose allergies. As it is high in carbohydrates but comparatively low in fat& protein. While comparing to other nutrient sources. That’s why the taste of rice milk is sweet in comparison to other milk with a pleasant taste.

Cashew Milk

Extracting this milk from the cashew, you have to soak cashews in water and later grind them to extract the milk.

As the unsaturated fat content in cashews is more, therefore it carries more cholesterol and high unsaturated fat which is a concern for people with high cholesterol levels, and therefore cashew milk is a good alternative for these people. Because of its texture, it has creamy fat which is good in taste and gives your taste buds a new experience.

Also, you can sustain this milk for 3-4 days.

Blend in Vegan Milk

Blend in general is plant milk which is made from two or more nutrient sources for eg. Mixing oats and rice together to form a blend in a vegan milk. Other examples in the blend are almond-cashew milk and almond-cashew milk.

Source Content In The Vegan Milk

The concentration of actual source content in the vegan milk is 2% and the rest is almost water. To get the taste and texture as that of dairy milk, add it with guar gum, xantham gum, and sunflower lecithin. And since vegan milk is less in micronutrients in comparison with dairy milk and ingredients such as calcium, vitamin B, and D, salts. Thus, adding all these with aroma and taste, and color to match the quality of dairy milk.

Greenhouse Gas Emission For Different Milks

Vegan societies raise a concern, that dairy or cow milk is also responsible for the contribution of global warming. If you take 1 glass (200gm) of milk, then the maximum CO2 emission comes out from the dairy milk. Generally, out of rice, soy, oat, and almond milk.

As cow milk almost doubles the emission than other milk forms. However, dairy milk doesn’t restrict to milk production. Yet it also serves alternate income to farmers. By providing organic fertilizers, women empowerment in addition.

In vegan milk, certain additives and chemicals are also mixed. Emissions from production, land area, the water requirement of plant products vary from different geographical conditions which will result in greenhouse gas emission variably.

Other than this, different farm practices, regions of production, transportation, and market reach of the product also matter.

Comparison of Vegan Milk vs. Cow Milk

If we are switching from the cow milk to vegan milk, then there are some expectations which will drive us to adopt it. FSSAI has now allowed the vegan milk for food fortification.

Nutrient Value In Different Types Of Milk

• Cow milk has generally lot of nutrition in it. As we can see above that energy in kJ in cow milk is more as compared to soy, almond and oat milk which are unsweetened (no sugar is added).
• Protein and fat content in cow milk is also greater than other milks and that is why more cream is produced in cow milk.
• Saturated fat which is a major component for butter formation is also more in cow milk.
• Carbohydrate content is also high in cow milk but less than oat milk.
• Fiber in cow milk is almost nil but found in other milks.
• Sugar content in vegan milk is very less but high in cow milk.
• Vegan milk has more calcium content as compared to the cow milk.
• Cholesterol in vegan milk is found zero but can be found in cow milk. So people with high cholesterol level should cow milk or can drink it by diluting it.