Winter Fancy Food Show

Milkadamia’s Artisan plant-based milks launch in refrigerated set, show ‘less is more’

By Elizabeth Crawford

- Last updated on GMT

Related tags Fancy Food Show plant-based milk

Plant-based milk brand milkadamia moves into the refrigerated set and proves “less is more” with the debut of its organic Artisan macadamia milk and blends line that skips the fillers and gums common in many non-dairy beverages and responds to a growing demand for more homemade-like options.

The Artisan line, which launched at the Winter Fancy Food Show in Las Vegas last week, is available in five refrigerated options and one shelf-stable SKU – all of which are USDA certified organic and include only four or five ingredients that consumers can find in their kitchen cupboards. The refrigerated options include Original Macadamia Milk, Unsweetened Macadamia Milk, Macadamia and Oat Milk, Macadamia and Coconut Milk and Macadamia and Almond Milk. The Artisan Macadamia Milk is also available as a shelf stable option.

“We developed the new line of products and we call it Artisan [because it mimics] that experience that consumers have when they make their own milk at home,” which includes “more of a raw nut milk” flavor profile that is nuttier and not as smooth as the original offerings, which include some natural gums to round out the mouthfeel, CEO Alexandra Newman told FoodNavigator-USA.

The launch follows similar innovations by competitors, including Oatly​, which respond to consumer demand for “clean label” options are looking for plant-based products with shorter ingredient lists and fewer “industrial” ingredients.

Refrigerated dominates US sales of plant-based milks

The expansion into the refrigerated set also allows milkadamia to cater to the majority of US consumers who prefer “fresh” plant-based milks.

Newman explained more than 85% of plant-based milks sold in the US are refrigerated.

“The US is atypical in the world in the way that the consumer buys milk. People in the US like to buy milk in the refrigerated case versus [the] majority of countries in Europe or even South America or Asia where people buy milk as a shelf stable product. So not being [in the refrigerated set], we were missing out on exposure to the consumer who doesn’t even know that shelf stable [milks] exist or doesn’t show the shelf stable aisle,” she said.

This is the second time that milkadamia has tried to play in the refrigerated space. Newman says the company launched a refrigerated line about four years ago, but the taste profile and price point were not competitive or where they are today.

A premium, yet approachable option

Within the refrigerated set, milkadamia will standout as a premium option given macadamia nuts can be upwards of 400% more expensive and offers a unique flavor, texture and health profile, Newman said.

But, she added, to appeal to a broader set of consumers who may not be familiar with macadamia nuts or who want a more affordable option, the company is creating blends that combine its namesake macadamia nuts with oat, almond and coconut, which is still relatively niche but growing fast.

Milkadamia’s commitment to responsible, regenerative sourcing

Milkadamia also stands out among the competition for its commitment to offering products that are not just healthy for people but also the planet.

“It is a brand that embraces … intelligent sourcing,” including from farms that practice regenerative agriculture and championing agricultural practices that reduce or sequester carbon, Newman explained.

More room to grow

As the company expands in the plant-based milk set, it also is exploring “every single dairy category” as well as adjacent categories for additional opportunities, said Newman. For example, she said, last year the company successfully launched a Coffee Latte and a Milk Tea.

The company also offers a pure macadamia oil in an 8.5 ounce bottle.

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