Wonder how one plant based milk compares to another? Read on to find out…
Whatever your reason for seeking a plant based alternative to cow’s milk, it can be quite confusing to know which is the right one for you! There are, of course, flavour differences in each which may determine your favourite, but there are also the health and environmental implications which may affect which one is the right for you. But how do you decide? We’ve broken down the basics to help you.
Healthy Body – Almond milk is certainly one of the most popular choices of plant based milks. It has less saturated and unsaturated fats than cow’s milk, is low in calories making it good for weight loss and is good for adults and children who may suffer allergies to other milks. Health-wise, almond milk is a definite contender. But there is a growing down-side to choosing almond milk – and that is the damage the industry is doing to the environment.
Healthy Planet – Although the carbon created in the production of a litre of almond milk (360g of carbon) vs semi-skimmed cow’s milk (1.67kg of carbon), it is harming bee populations and uses a lot of water. It takes 6,098 litres of water to produce a single litre of almond milk and the almond industry in California is buckling. 80% of the world’s almonds are grown in California where farmers are destroying large areas of biodiverse orange groves to make room for the burgeoning demand of almonds, necessitating the need for increasing levels of water which is not sustainable in a state which has seen severe droughts in the past decade.
But this isn’t even the worst news about California’s almond industry. In order to pollinate this vast number of almond trees, billions of bees are required to be imported from all over the US. The pesticides, disease and habitat loss attributed to almond farming have seen huge numbers of bees wiped out. During a few months in 2018 – 2019 50billion bees died out due to this large scale application of such a fragile part of the natural world. Enough of a reason to stay off almond milk in our opinion!