SALT LAKE CITY — Over the years, alternative milk options for those with lactose intolerance or dairy allergies have grown. Some of the options are familiar standards — almond milk and soy milk. Some of the options stray into a weirder, occasionally hilarious territory, like pea milk (yeah, it’s a thing).
The next star to rise isn’t another nut milk, and it isn’t coconut milk.
It’s oat milk.
According to Business Insider, oat milk is one of four top food trends to be on the lookout for in 2019, up there with canned fish, fresh alternatives to shelf food and CBD-infused foods.
Business Insider reports that oat milk is more sustainable and less water-intensive than almond milk and that it’s normally less expensive. We may even see oat-based dairy products like yogurt and cheese this year.
On January 8, the Utah Governor’s Office of Economic Development announced that Oatly, Inc., a Swedish company founded in the 1990s, will expand it’s operations to Utah.
The GOED said in a press release that Oatly will add up to 50 jobs, $2.9 million in new state revenue and up to $40 million in capital investment in Weber County over the next seven years.
The company will open a location in Ogden, which is also its first location in the western United States, according to a press release.
Theresa Foxley, president and CEO of the Economic Development Corporation of Utah, said Oatly’s values of “sustainability and environmental friendliness” align with the corporation’s vision of economic development in Utah.
Ogden City Mayor Mike Caldwell also expressed excitement at Oatly’s Ogden location.
“The company’s commitment to healthy lifestyles aligns well with Ogden’s values and unmatched access to outdoor recreation,” he said.
There’s no word on when exactly the factory will open and subsequently when Oatly products will hit the shelves, but once they’re here, Oatly US General Manager Mike Messersmith said they will try to supply as much oat milk as people want.
“Our upcoming factory in Ogden will help us keep oatmilk in all the many coffee shops, grocery stores and refrigerators that want it.”
For more on the rise of oatmilk and Oatly, check out this article from The New York Times.