Oatly and Fortification
Let’s get right into it!
Food fortification is when vitamins and minerals are added to increase a product’s nutritional value, and we fortify our products with the same vitamins and minerals as the ones found in cow’s milk because we want to make the shift to plant-based as easy as possible. Regulations and recommendations around vitamins or minerals are country-specific which means that fortificants might vary depending on the country – but you’ll always find the nutritional values, as well as the vitamins and minerals used, directly on the product packaging or on our website.
Is it a good thing to fortify products?
Fortifying food is common practice and can play an important role in improving the nutrient intake of the population when targeted appropriately (WHO’s words, not ours! Guidelines on food fortification with micronutrients, 2006 ). So yes, it’s a good thing, so that we can make sure food products sustains our nutrious needs. And although you may not have thought about it, cow's milk can also be viewed as fortified. The difference is that instead of fortifying the end product, the feed given to the cows are fortified - it’s similar, but occurs at another stage and the “production process” is occurring in the body of the cow. To replace traditional animal-based dairy, we believe food fortification of plant-based drinks with vitamins and minerals is nutritionally essential. As always, everything we use is 100% plant-based, and that goes for the vitamins and minerals as well.
But hey – don’t we need cow’s milk for our bones?
You might remember growing up with the mantra that cow’s milk helps build strong bones and teeth. However, it’s mainly the calcium in the cow’s milk that’s the reason behind the strong bones and teeth mantra – i.e. the same calcium that can also be found in our products! Cow’s milk does contain nutrients such as calcium (and in some countries vitamin D), but it’s not the one and only source. The reason for cow’s milk being seen as essential for strong bones is because it’s been the main source of calcium (and in some countries vitamin D) for a long time. But as you know by now (if you didn’t skip the first part), this is exactly what we’ve made sure of – fortifying our products to be able to offer a similar nutritional profile as cow’s milk so you won’t miss out on any key vitamins or minerals!
And what about your organic drinks?
Our organic products are not fortified with vitamins or minerals (except in Sweden, where we fortify organic drinks with vitamin D), because of EU and country specific legislations. You can read more about this topic here.