Milk-lovers may soon be able to drink cow’s milk and hold the cow, thanks to a startup that is successfully producing the beverage with just the animal’s cells.
Boston startup Brown Foods has created “UnReal Milk,” a cow-free alternative with the same nutritional profile, taste, and texture as milk produced from the mammary glands of cows.
“Having struggled with dairy, being a vegetarian throughout my life, with additional concerns with milk when we got pregnant and had our 1st baby, I am thrilled to embark on this mission to re-create dairy with Brown Foods,” CEO Sohail Gupta wrote in a LinkedIn post.
The product will reduce the carbon footprint of milk by over 90% while also being completely cruelty-free, Brown Foods says. Eventually, the company also expects its product to match the price of regular milk.
Animal rights activists have expressed outrage at the heightened prices of alternatives to traditional milk, with People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals recently staging a nearly 90-day sit-in at a Seattle Starbucks to protest the upcharge that the company places on vegan milk options. Alternative milks made up 15.2% of all milk retail in 2020.
UnReal Milk has yet to hit markets, but Brown Foods already has plans to develop butter and ice cream using its cow-free milk.