Which vegan milk is best for the environment? © Getty

Which vegan milk is best for the environment?

Splashing it all over your cereal in the morning, in your tea, dare I say in your hot cocoa at bedtime, but have you thought about which one has the least environmental impact?

Asked by: Libby Chapman, Nottingham

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All of the non-dairy milks are much better for the environment than cow’s milk. They use less land, less water and generate lower amounts of greenhouse gases. The milk with the lowest greenhouse gas emissions is almond milk, because the trees lock up a lot of CO₂ as they grow. However, it does require the most water to produce of the vegan milks. Soy milk uses the least water with only slightly higher emissions.

Environmental impact of one glass (200ml) of different milks:

1

Dairy

Emissions (kg) = 0.63

Land use (square metre) = 1.79

Water (litre) = 125.6

2

Rice

Emissions (kg) = 0.24

Land use (square metre) = 0.07

Water (litre) = 54

3

Soy

Emissions (kg) = 0.2

Land use (square metre) = 0.13

Water (litre) = 5.6

4

Oat

Emissions (kg) = 0.18

Land use (square metre) =0.15

Water (litre) = 9.6

5

Almond

Emissions (kg) = 0.14

Land use (square metre) = 0.1

Water (litre) = 74.3

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