[30 May/Stuff NZ]

Otis, a New Zealand start-up has plans to take its plant-based oat milk to the world. The first locally-produced product of its kind, Otis oat milk is made with Southland and Otago oats and processed at FoodSouth’s Canterbury facility. Tim Ryan, Managing Director reports that the company is wanting to expand to 300 cafes within New Zealand by the end of the year, along with boosting production to half a million litres annually with the product eventually being sold overseas. The product is currently in selected Dunedin cafes. Mr Ryan reports that the oat milk is a sustainable alternative to dairy and that product development took nearly a year. Oat milk is sold at a premium and is the fastest growing plant-based milk category in a global market expected to be worth more than USD$38 billion (approx. NZD $57 billion) by 2024. Mr Ryan stated oat milk contained about half the fat of dairy milk and was high in the soluble fibre beta-glucan which could help reduce cholesterol.