“Our test consumers loved the flavor and creaminess and recognized walnuts as a true superfood offering numerous health benefits,” Matt Mariani, who oversees sales and marketing for the nut company, said in a statement. “We are excited to bring this innovative line of Walnutmilk to the refrigerated dairy case.”
The plant-based milk market is currently booming, expected to reach $16 billion by the end of this year, and $34 billion by 2024. A growing number of companies are seeing the potential in the industry – some dairy brands are even getting involved and developing vegan milk for a new market.
U.S. company, Elmhurst, spent decades producing dairy, however, the brand realized that a change had to be made as demand for its dairy products began to decrease. “We are at the helm of a radical shift in food technology,” Schwartz, grandson of the founder of Elmhurst, said to NPR in January. “We are able to look at plant-based food sources in a new way as we maximize the nutrition that exists in these sources and eliminate food waste as we utilize every piece of the nut or grain.”
Schwartz added: “It was time to re-evaluate the past and start creating the food traditions that would carry us into the future.”
Mariani, with its new Walnutmilk, also hopes to shape the future of the milk industry. Available from the brand’s current retail partners in Texas and Northern California, vanilla, unsweetened, and original flavors will retail at around $3.49-$3.99 per carton.
The new milk is free of lactose, with 50 percent more calcium than dairy milk, according to the company. Furthermore, the new product is non-GMO, made with 100 percent California-grown walnuts and free of both gluten and soy.
Much like other types of nut milk, walnut milk is a good source of vitamins – containing vitamin A, as well as ALA, an omega-3 fatty acid that’s good for the heart.
Image Credit: Mariani Nut Company | Elmhurst