From Camel Milk To Donkey Milk: Indians Adopting Alternative And Healthier Options
- Tavishi Dogra
Updated : January 27, 2022 14:01 IST
The evolution of unique milk varieties in India: How Indians are ‘moo’ving away from the traditional dairy market?
Milk is almost like an everyday drink we see across the globe. It’s harder to keep a glass of this nutritious drink away from its people. Besides the love for milk, we are also the largest milk producer globally. Most of the milk produced in India owes itself to two bovine animals, the cow and the buffalo. These milk sources enjoyed a monopoly in the dairy industry hitherto. But there are alternatives too in the milk market is booming and is providing stiff competition to conventional dairy. As a result, many Indians move away from the "moo".
The Dissection of the Dairy Dilemma
Consumers are gradually making a choice, and it's evident with every passing year. The alternative milk market in India stood at $20.9 million in 2018. Most of India's once "panacea for all ills" is dwindling as one of the most common drinks in Indian households. Cow’s milk has been marketed as a magic potion for so long, but the reality manifests a stark facade. The conventional dairy labelled as 100% pure cow’s milk is all but a ruse. As per the latest annual report by the Consumer Guidance Society of India (CGSI), 79% of cow milk is adulterated in Maharashtra, a prime milk market in India. The commercial circumference for cow’s milk and the greed of vendors to sell diluted and adulterated milk to save on costs and boost sales are pushing people away. Instead, alternative options like Camel Milk and Donkey Milk are gaining popularity. Most of these options are still untapped and untouched by most in the commercial space, but they are organically making their way onto consumers’ consciousness.
Are the alternate milk options healthier? Explains Hitesh Rathi, Founder, Aadvik Foods
Around 60% of the Indian population is lactose intolerant, and most of them do not even realize it. However, people are now shifting their preferences to other choices available in the market without compromising on nutrition. Non-dairy options such as Almond Milk, Oat Milk, and Soy Milk are generating a buzz, as they help eliminate lactose intolerance associated with animal-based milk. But non-dairy alternatives come with a snag; they don’t provide the essential nutrients required for the human body. This is the need gap that manifests the unique dairy options as the saviours of our nutriment needs. Today, Camel Milk, Donkey Milk, and Goat Milk are becoming sought-after alternatives for those who want to enjoy the benefits of animal-based milk.
Goat Milk is another option that is being gravitated towards by many who are lactose intolerant and aspire to have a healthy gut without compromising on the nutritional benefits. As a result, the market has noticed that many companies are developing Goat Milk-based baby formulas suitable for lactose-intolerant babies. In this saga of humans and animal-based milk, the alternative dairy market has unearthed another gem - Jenny Milk.
Camel Milk has won many lactose-intolerant consumers looking to shift from the conventional option. This is because it has therapeutic properties and significantly higher Vitamin C, Calcium, and Iron levels than Cow Milk. It also consists of diabetes-friendly proteins and can ward off viral infections due to its anti-oxidant and anti-inflammatory properties. Due to these indisputable benefits, many consumers shift to such alternates.
Donkey Milk’s pricing and availability make it a far-fetched product for everyday consumption. But, unequivocally, it is also one of the most nutritious milk products available. The most premium nutraceutical companies use freeze-dried Donkey Milk Powder for their first-rate health supplements.
A significant gain for the alternative dairy market looks to be in the offing. A growing lactose intolerant population is evaluating the need for healthful options. As a result, India’s alternative dairy market lures investors to put their money in a space that will soon transform the niche category into the new normal.