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Sales of Plant-Based Foods Grew 11 Percent in the Past Year

More than one in 10 milk purchases go to plant-based alternatives, while plant-based meats are still surging.

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The market for plant-based foods has grown in the past year, although slower than it did from 2017-18.

knape | Getty Images

for plant-based milks, dairy and meats accounted for $4.5 billion in the 52 weeks ending in April, a of 11 percent, according to data released today from The Good Food Institute and the Plant Based Foods Association. The rate of growth from the 52-week period ending in April 2018 was 20 percent.

Related: 5 Predictions About the Future of Food From an Early Beyond Meat Investor

Within plant-based foods, meat alternatives are the rising star. The category's sales grew by 10 percent in the past year, with sales totaling more than $800 million. The organizations said that plant-based alternatives now account for 2 percent of packaged meat sales.

Plant-based sales make up 13 percent of the entire milk category after growing 6 percent over the past year. Plant-based dairy products also saw a surge: yogurt has grown 39 percent, has grown 19 percent and has grown 27 percent.

The two organizations pointed out that the total U.S. retail food market has grown just 2 percent in dollar sales during this same period, but to be sure, conventional products still account for most food sales.

Related: Plant-Based Meat Maker 'Before the Butcher' Acquired by Owners of Ground Beef Company

It's been a big year for plant-based food makers, particularly in the meat category: Beyond Meat went public with a successful IPO, introduced a plant-based ground beef product and will debut a new version of its burger soon; partnered with , among other eateries, and is working on a fish alternative; and competition will grow with a new plant-based burger from Nestle under its Sweet Earth Foods brand.

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