Almond Breeze

By George Grow

This is Bill White with the VOA Special English AGRICULTURE REPORT.

A group of farmers based in the American state of California has begun producing and selling a milk-like drink made from nuts called almonds. The group hopes the new product will be popular with people who want something healthy to drink instead of cow's milk.

More and more people are demanding products to take the place of cow's milk in their diet. In the United States, an estimated thirty-million to fifty-million people suffer from some form of a condition called lactose intolerance. Their bodies are unable to break down lactose, the main sugar found in milk. They may become sick or have stomach or intestinal problems.

In addition, an increasing number of Americans are concerned about what they eat. They want drinks they believe are better for their health than cow's milk. Other Americans strongly object to eating or drinking milk or other food products from animals.

The new drink is called Almond Breeze. It is made from almonds, the sweet-tasting nuts from almond trees. Almond Breeze was developed by Blue Diamond, a trade group of almond growers.

Sam Cunningham is director of research and development at Blue Diamond. He believes the nutty-tasting drink may find a market among the millions of people unable to drink cow's milk.

Mr. Cunningham says parents can feel good about their children drinking Almond Breeze because it is healthy. The product is low in salt. It has no lactose, harmful cholesterol or saturated fats. He says calcium and vitamins known to support good health have been added to the drink.

Blue Diamond says Almond Breeze does not separate when added to hot drinks. The group says people who like the drink's mild taste may want to add it to coffee or other foods.

Mr. Cunningham says Blue Diamond is beginning to sell the drink at food shows in Europe and Asia. It will compete with other increasingly popular drinks made with soy or rice.

The makers of Almond Breeze say their product tastes better than either soy or rice drinks. The group organized taste comparison tests of their product and the competition. They say more people liked their product than soy or rice drinks.

This VOA Special English AGRICULTURE REPORT was written by George Grow. This is Bill White.

Voice of America Special English