The milk we regularly encounter at our local grocery store can easily be divided into two categories: dairy (animal-based) and dairy-free (plant-based). Between the two, dairy-free milk is undoubtedly better for the environment.
In recent years, the dairy-free milk options at grocery stores have only grown. Even the smallest stores typically have an option or two. While each plant-based pick—from oat milk to soy milk—is drastically better for the planet than its dairy counterpart, it’s inevitable for any mass-produced crop to induce some kind of environmental impact. Nonetheless, the shortcomings of non-dairy milk production are nearly insignificant in comparison to the global issues caused by animal milk.
Below, we break down some of the most popular daily and dairy-free milk options so you can learn about the impacts of each. Even by reading this and looking into your options, you’re already taking a positive step toward bettering the planet.