Danone's Silk introduces 'Nextmilk' in a plant-based play for dairy lovers

·Reporter, Booking Producer
·2 min read

Plant-based brand Silk is trying to capture the hearts of dairy lovers with a faux-dairy innovation, Nextmilk.

Beginning on January 19th, the new offering will debut on store shelves, including Target (TGT), Kroger (KR), Publix and H-E-B grocery chain. The offerings include two different milks: whole fat and 2% reduced fat, two categories that are part of an overall decline in dairy amid booming demand for plant-based options.

The company billed the new milk as a "revolutionary" product formulated to "meet dairy-lovers’ taste expectations," and mimic traditional milk's rich and creamy taste and texture. The box sports the tagline: "so rich you won't miss dairy."

John Starkey, president of plant-based food & beverages for Danone North America, told Yahoo Finance the creation combines oat milk, and a plant-based blend featuring soy and creamy coconut milk.

"Rather than focus on one plant-based ingredient, it uses a familiar blend of plant-based ingredients designed to deliver on the taste and texture of dairy," Starkey said. The formula includes nutrients found in traditional dairy like calcium, vitamin D, vitamin A, B12, riboflavin and phosphorus — in addition to 4 grams of plant-based protein per a serving.

He believes the unique blend will capture a hesitant segment of hardcore dairy-lovers that haven't made the switch to almond, soy, oat or coconut. Some 53% of people who said they would not purchase a plant-based product because of its taste, Starkey said, but "like the idea of plant based beverages."

The company is "welcoming those reluctant dairy lovers to the future of plant based beverages," Starkey noted.

The overall plant-based category has seen a major surge in adopters — with a commensurate decline in dairy — as more consumers look to shift to 'flexitarian' diets that focus on plant-based products, with occasional animal-based options.

Other companies like Oatly (OTLY), Planet Oat and Chobani have gained attention in recent years with their plant-based milk offerings. Starkey asserted that Silk remains the top player in the plant based beverage game, "given our years of pioneering leadership across the segment."

Brooke DiPalma is a producer and reporter for Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter at @BrookeDiPalma or email her at bdipalma@yahoofinance.com.

Follow Yahoo Finance on Twitter, Instagram, YouTube, Facebook, Flipboard, and LinkedIn.