Millennials appear to be losing taste for 'fake' milk after Innocent drinks announced it was ditching its vegan range.

The ethical drinks company - known for its popular fruit smoothies - is scrapping the trendy beverages after disappointing sales.

The £1.85 products - which come in hazelnut, coconut and almond flavours - are already labelled as 'sold out' on the Tesco website.

Plant-based milk has grown in popularity over recent years. In 2021 almost one-in-three Britons used the alternative milk. But now millennials' love for the vegan drink seems to have soured amid the cost-of-living crisis.

Making light of the lack of interest, an Innocent spokesperson said: 'Nutterly disappointing news. We're sad to say that our dairy-free range will be leaving shelves in the next few weeks.

'We know some of you really love our coconut, hazelnut and almond drinks, so we wanted to say a big thanks for buying them. We really appreciate all five of you.'

Innocent history: From selling at a jazz festival to dizzying highs of a £100m Coca-Cola deal

Innocent was set up in 1998 by a trio of Cambridge graduates, Richard Reed, Adam Balon and John Wright. 

They spent their first £500 on fruit to sell smoothies at a jazz festival in Parsons Green, south-west London. 

Fast-forward to 2013 and the ethical drinks brand was worth millions. 

It was taken over by Coca-Cola, who snapped up the brand in a £100million deal, buying the founders' shares in the company.  

Others were more upset by the move. Customer Darren said: 'Not selling enough of them I imagine? I actually really liked the coconut one. Shame.'

Innocent replied: 'Unfortunately, just like Shakira's hips, our sales figures don't lie.'

Melissa Therms said: 'The almond is so good, but not always available at my local market,' prompting the company to reply: 'Well at least you'll be used to it still not being there.'

But some criticised the company with one saying: 'Go woke, etc.' 

While some shoppers claimed they had never even heard of the now-doomed drinks range. 'I never knew you did them can we have another try,' one Twitter user said, while another admitted: 'I didn't even know they existed.'

A spokesperson for innocent said: We made the difficult decision to stop our Dairy Alternatives range from April 2023 in order to focus on our best selling fruit and veg juices and smoothies. 

'Whilst we know that some of our drinkers are sad to see the dairy alternatives range go, we are constantly creating new drinks for people to enjoy and we will continue to explore the use of dairy alternative ingredients as part of this. 

'In fact, we are already working on some tasty new recipes which include dairy alternative ingredients as part of our product innovation.'

Innocent was set up in 1998 by a trio of Cambridge graduates, Richard Reed, Adam Balon and John Wright, to capitalise on the growing market for healthy drinks and smoothies.

The company was taken over by Coca-Cola in 2013, which reportedly bought the brand for a dizzying £100million. 

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The fizzy drinks empire, which already owned 58 per cent of Innocent, snapped up the shareholdings of founders three founders in a deal that gave Coca-Cola at least 90 per cent ownership and values Innocent in the region of £320million.

The founders initially bought £500 of fruit to make smoothies at the Jazz on the Green festival in Parsons Green, south-west London, selling some of their first bottles at a music festival. 

Customers told them the drinks were so good they should leave their jobs in management consultancy and advertising to set up Innocent.

By 2007, Innocent had cornered the smoothie market and made a profit of £8million, but a year later provoked controversy after selling an 18 per cent stake to Coca-Cola for £30million.

In 2010, Coca Cola bought out original backer Maurice Pinto and his friend Jules Hydleman, who first invested £250,000 into the business, paying another £65million to increase its ownership to 58 per cent.

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2023-03-23T11:01:32Z dg43tfdfdgfd