The Demise Of Soy Milk

In the bustling world of non-dairy beverages, former queen bee soy milk is, like, so out.

With aisles full of flavored almond milks and Starbucks' introduction of a Coconut Milk Mocha Macchiato, soy milk is lagging behind its healthier competitors, Munchies reports.

This rise of new non-dairy alternatives, combined with debunked health claims about soy milk, are contributing to the drink's demise.

That demise is pretty dark: Since its golden days in 2008, sales of the beverage have fallen 60 percent, according to Euromonitor International via Munchies. 

It all began in 1999, when the FDA said soy-milk producers could tell consumers that the product could reduce the risk of heart disease. Those ads helped soy milk skyrocket to the top of dairy-milk alternatives -- until, you know, the American Heart Association stepped in and said the claims were bologna.

Later studies (which are contested) said soy could be linked to breast cancer. That bummer, plus knowledge that most soy produced in the U.S. has been genetically modified, gave soy milk a bad rep in the minds of health-conscious consumers. Thus, the drink lost most of its faithful followers. 

Almond milk, cousin to the soy variety, has moved into the spotlight. Non-dairy/non-soy milks are now a $1.4 billion industry in the U.S. (compared with $1.2 million in soy milk's glory days).

Popular milk brand Silk sells half the soy milk it used to sell, while its almond-milk revenue is up by 300 percent.

All the same, almond milk has its own share of issues, namely that it takes a ton of water to make and that a leading almond-milk brand got sued for allegedly putting almost no almonds in its product.

Alas, the globe of non-dairy milk keeps turning with the addition of enticing newcomers pea milk and cockroach milk.