Quiz: What’s the Main Ingredient in Almond Milk?

Not almonds -- by a long shot! A lawsuit against Blue Diamond's Almond Breeze charges that the name is misleading.

Quiz: What’s the Main Ingredient in Almond Milk? Photo (cc) by JeepersMedia

Are you an almond milk lover? Would you be surprised to find out that your creamy beverage of choice is mostly made of water, sugar, carrageenan and sunflower lecithin?

That’s the premise of a new false advertising lawsuit, which claims that Blue Diamond almond milk, sold as Almond Breeze, contains a scant 2 percent almonds, FoodNavigator-USA reports.

The lawsuit, filed in New York, argues that Blue Diamond is misleading consumers into thinking Almond Breeze is made primarily from almonds with the phrase “made from real almonds” and the pictures of almonds on its packaging.

Although the lawsuit doesn’t specify what percentage of almonds the beverage should contain, it does say “upon an extensive review of the recipes for almond milk on the Internet, the vast majority of the recipes call for one part almond and three or four parts water, amounting to 25-33 percent of almonds.”

The Blue Diamond website lists these ingredients for the original Almond Breeze: almond milk (filtered water, almonds), evaporated cane juice, calcium carbonate, sea salt, potassium citrate, carrageenan, sunflower lecithin, vitamin A palmitate, vitamin D2, d-alpha-tocopherol (natural vitamin E).

Although Blue Diamond doesn’t divulge the percentage of almonds in its almond milk in the United States, its UK website lists 2 percent almonds.

When a similar issue arose in the UK three years ago, Time reported that the UK’s Advertising Standards Authority ultimately decided that consumers understood how much water was required to make almond milk: “We considered that, whilst consumers might not be aware of exactly how almond milk was produced, they were likely to realize… that the production of almond milk would necessarily involve combining almonds with a suitable proportion of liquid to produce a ‘milky’ consistency.”

In a statement to Time, Blue Diamond said that water is the main ingredient in most beverages:

The primary ingredient in nearly all popular beverages including coffee, tea, soda, juice and sports drinks is water. Cow’s milk is 85 percent to 95 percent water and the same can be said for most soy and almond milks, which is why our brand is not alone in responding to recent claims.

Do you drink almond milk? Are you surprised that the creamy beverage potentially contains just 2 percent almonds? Share your thoughts below or on our Facebook page.

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