The dairy World Milk Day has been celebrated annually on June 1 since 2001.
Organizers say the dairy-free event marks the fact that “millions of people across the world are turning away from dairy and towards plant-based alternatives.”
The dairy alternatives industry is set to top $35bn by 2024, up from $8.2bn in 2014, with 58% of people in the US now using or having tried plant-based dairy alternatives.
ProVegUK said there are now fewer than 9,500 dairy farms in the UK compared with 13,000 a decade ago, and predictions there will only be around 5,000 by 2025 demonstrate a significant market trend away from dairy.
Zephie Begolo, head of campaigns for ProVeg UK, said, “Never before have we seen people across the world transition so quickly from one foodstuff to its alternatives in this way. People are fast realizing that plant milks outweigh dairy in terms of benefits for personal health, animal welfare and the environment.”
Consumers can now buy a huge variety of dairy alternatives and they are more readily available than ever, Zephie added.
“And with big supermarkets, high street chains, retailers and food outlets buying into the trend, it seems it is unstoppable.”
Brands, cafes and restaurants across the UK, including Kellogg’s, Bella Italia, Handmade Burger Co, Pret a Manger and Starbucks, are set to join the campaign with special promotions on their dairy-free food and beverages on or around World Plant Milk Day.
ProVeg UK recently launched its 7-Day Dairy-Free Challenge, which is calling on people to give up dairy for a week.