It’s no secret that fluid milk consumption has been on the decline while milk imposters crowd the dairy aisle. The good news, though, is that milk is still America’s top dairy beverage pick.
Data included in a special article by USDA, titled “On different trajectories: A look at sales of cows’ milk and plant-based milk analogs,” showed that 92.2 percent of U.S. households bought cows’ milk in 2015. That was compared to 32.3 percent of families who bought a plant-based dairy alternative during the year.
A majority of the households, 89.7 percent, that purchased dairy alternatives also bought cows’ milk. Just 3.3 percent of families who purchased one or more dairy alternative beverages bought no cows’ milk.
Milk from mammals has more nutritional value; it also comes with a more wallet-friendly price tag. According to the study, a half-gallon of cows’ milk sold for an average price of $2.42 per gallon. Meanwhile, the average price for a half-gallon of almond milk was $2.87, soy milk was $2.98, and other plant-based products rang up at $3.03.
Price didn’t seem to be a major factor influencing purchasing decisions, though. For households in the highest income bracket (more than $99,999), dairy alternatives made up 8.38 percent of all dairy beverage purchases. The lowest income category (less than $25,000) still spent 6.81 percent of their dairy beverage dollars on alternative dairy drinks.