How to Consciously Uncouple from Dairy In Your Office Snack Program
Remember the good ol' days when your trip to the office kitchen meant that familiar hum of the coffee machine and a fridge stocked with all the dairy you can imagine: whole milk, 2%, and the key staple of our youth, non-fat skim milk. Well, times are changing, and dairy products are taking a backseat to the new kids on the block: non-dairy milk.
In our exploration of 2023’s office coffee trends, we uncovered that Oatly Oat Milk was the number one product in the dairy and alternatives category across the top workplaces. Although whole milk was number two on that list, Silk Unsweetened Almond Milk took the third spot, making non-dairy alternatives two of the top three products in the dairy and alternative category.
Oat milk may be in the top spot today, but who knows what new trend is just around the corner. Food trends constantly change, and having a snack program on autopilot will not cut it. Your office kitchen needs to reflect the latest products your employees love, but we know you don’t have the time among all your other responsibilities. That’s why most top workplaces trust Crafty with their global food and beverage program. We keep you on trend…and on budget.
Anyway, we’re exploring the dairy-free revolution and unraveling the what, the how, and the why behind making a conscious effort to uncouple from dairy across your office. Luckily, many brands have stepped up their game, offering a wide variety of dairy alternatives so you can enjoy all your favorites, like cereal, coffee, yogurt, bars, and beyond. You can just do it in a way that doesn’t destroy your body or the environment.
Diving Into The Data
Non-dairy milk has been making waves in the world of office food service and beyond. In 2021, milk alternatives had the highest sales value in the plant-based food market in the United States, coming in at 2.8 billion U.S. dollars. More and more people are opting for oat or almond milk in their morning coffee or grabbing a dairy-free, canned option from the shelves.
One of the key features of the Crafty technology suite is tracking product consumption across each of your offices. While we love to use all this information to explore product trends, our clients love being able to see where their money is going, what is resonating with employees, and ensuring all of that stays within budget.
We crunched the numbers across the dairy category, comparing 2023 to the previous year, and found some interesting insights.
- 159% increase in oat milk units purchased
- 89% increase in almond milk units purchased
- 59% increase in oat milk canned coffee beverage units purchased
Cutting Dairy = Inclusive Workplace
The answer to why this shift is happening can boil down to the increased spotlight on dietary preferences and sustainability. To attract a diverse workforce, you must cater to these preferences at all levels, specifically in your office kitchen and pantry program.
The world is becoming more conscious of dietary preferences and restrictions. Embracing non-dairy alternatives opens up your office coffee, snack, and beverage program to a broader audience. A recent study from Dive Research revealed that 3 out of 4 Americans enjoy coffee every day, and not having the right mix-ins can be frustrating for such an essential office ritual. It's a small change that can make a big difference in creating a welcoming and accommodating workspace.
Sustainability is another hot issue among employees, and the production of your favorite foods can greatly impact the environment. An Oxford study found that a glass of dairy milk produces almost three times the greenhouse gas emissions of non-dairy milk. The question then becomes, which non-dairy milk has the most negligible environmental impact? BBC broke down the impact based on a few key factors. That said, even just switching from dairy to any non-dairy options can help.
Office Snack & Drink Swaps
Now that we’ve provided some facts, you can consciously choose to reduce dairy consumption at the office. Remember, this isn't just about following trends; it's about positively impacting your team’s health and the larger environment.
Crafty's diverse product catalog is your playground when it comes to exploring non-dairy options. You can easily search for these products by using our “dairy-free” product characteristics filter. It's like having a personal food and beverage concierge at your fingertips. The possibilities are endless, from creamy oat milk for your morning coffee to tantalizing coconut yogurt. Who knows, you just might stumble upon your new office snack obsession.
Here are a few of our favorite easy swaps to start with:
Is coffee even worth it if you can’t capture that perfect slow-mo of the milk meeting the coffee? Among Crafty clients, oat milk takes the top spot. Try swapping your milk for Oatly’s Oat Milk or Minor Figures Barista Oat Milk. We also have many other alternatives from almond, coconut, and beyond.
Have you ever indulged in a non-dairy yogurt before? Curious palates can revel in the new world of plant-based yogurt by checking out products like Kite Hill’s Almond Milk Yogurt. It’s dairy-free but is still loaded with live active cultures and vanilla beans to produce the most scrumptious and healthy non-dairy yogurt available.
Yes, even your bars sometimes have dairy, and you don’t want your lactose-sensitive friends getting a hand on those. Swap them out for a YES Bar in apple cinnamon crisp or coconut-flavored Jonesbar.
Cookies & Candy
We all need a sweet treat now and again…and again. Make sure there are some non-dairy options everyone can enjoy, like Bobo's Oat Bites or Lotus Biscoff Cookie Butter & Breadsticks.
So there you have it, folks! You’ve seen the rise of non-dairy alternatives' popularity in the food service scene, and now you know exactly how to make easy swaps in your office kitchen and pantry. By embracing these new alternative options, you're keeping up with the latest office coffee trends and demonstrating your commitment to inclusivity and sustainability. Feel free to give yourself a high five.
Remember, it's all about making mindful choices that resonate with your employees. Crafty is your sidekick on this journey, offering an array of non-dairy delights along with the experts to bring it to life.
So go ahead, give it a try. Cheers to a conscious uncoupling from dairy at the office! 🥛