Saturday 5 December 2020

Flahavoatly nopely

Sinterklaas[avond] today - I am baking a mighty B for Boterletter to practice calorie intake for "The Holidays"

Oatly is a milk-like concoction developed by Swedish food engineers in U Lund in the 1990s. It has gone viral global since then, at least partly carried forward as a fashion accessory by neurotic people who believe they are lactose intolerant. It's hard to stand on even a pimple of the moral high ground over global dairy. Cows are a disaster for the planet, far less efficient in food conversion than, say, chicken and they burp prodigious quantities of methane, the greenhouse gas. I love dairy products; raw milk not so much but cheese, crème fraiche, buttermilk, and recently kefir are a significant fraction of my diet. But it's hard to justify filling the fridge with them. But I'm not going to replace milk-milk with {Oat Base (Water, Oats 10%), Rapeseed Oil, Acidity Regulator (Dipotassium Phosphate), Calcium Carbonate, Calcium Phosphates, Iodised Salt, Vitamins (D2, Riboflavin and B12)}; I'd rather go continental and take my tea zonders - without milk.

I wrote a conflicted piece about Oatly in 2016 because it started to appear in the weekly shop Chez Blob. Since then, I've been assured, by one who sinks a lot of lattés, that "Barista" Oatly makes much the best cappuccino. Like, whatevs, I only have cappuccino on Saturdays which could be pretty much any day since I R Retire. I'll tell ya something though. in 2016 1 lt of Oatly was €1.60 or 2x the price of milk. It is now €2.49 a +50% increase in cost in 4 years. I presume the product is now so well established in the shopping-basket of its supporters that it has become price-inelastic: they'll have it at any price. There is a hearts-and-minds war in Sweden between Big Dairy and Big Oatly.

Now there's a new kid on the block [Déise Oatly L]. The Beloved, a Waterford gal, snagged some of this as soon as she saw it. Of course we all want to shop local and reduce the transport miles on our food. What's not to love about something "made with IRISH OATS made with"?  And the price €2.49 is pitched toe-to-toe with Oatly's imported kvasi-mjölk. I'm sorry to report that Flahavoatly, despite being "tasty & foamable" ain't cuttin' the rug in the dance of white beverages. It's too minimal:  {water, oats (11%), Sunflower Oil (1.5%), sea salt}. Mouth feel, and coffee-lightening potential aren't as good as Oatly, sorry. It is also a concern among the osteoporotic that calcium supplements are missing; and in this Plague Year that vitamin-D is also absent. Of course there are other sources of Ca and vit-D (and riboflavin B2 and cobalamin B12) but it's an extra faff and cost to source them in sufficient quantity. There are excellent nanny-state public health reasons, dating back to Elsie Widdowson and WWII, for adding Calcium and B12 to milk. 

Another reason to support Flahavan's is that Oatly blotted their right-thinking copy-book by selling a 7% stake in the company (for $200 million in liquidity) to black-hearted Blackstone [triggers: Trump, rain-forest]. 

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