Country Crock is finally leaning into its plant-based roots. Despite rarely marking its products as dairy-free, the quintessential margarine brand has provided shoppers with a butter substitute for decades (note that some products do contain vitamin D3 from animal sources). Now, Country Crock is expanding its range to offer distinctly vegan items, revealing its new Plant Cream – a plant-based heavy whipping cream made from lentil milk. The brand announced that this whipping cream alternative could be used for savory or sweet recipes – or just simply whipped cream.

Country Crock’s new Plant Cream product consists of a proprietary blend of plant oils including palm and canola blended with lentil milk. The ready-to-pour cream alternative will help consumers easily replace conventional dairy in soup, biscuit, sauce, or dessert recipes. The lentil milk and oil blend replicates the creamy texture of traditional heavy cream, giving it the much-needed whipping ability.

"Country Crock Plant Cream is a must-have, secret weapon ingredient to have in the kitchen. Its versatility and delicious taste make it perfect for vegetarians, dairy intolerant, or plant-curious consumers," Brand Leader of Country Crock Natalie Cooper said. "We believe that once consumers make the switch, they will find surprising ways to enjoy it, including reheating leftovers, making ultra-creamy pasta, or baking a delicious dessert.”

Country Crock’s Plant Cream will be available at select Price Chopper, Safeway, United Supermarkets, Piggly Wiggly Alabama, and Albertson’s. At first, Publix will be the sole grocery store to carry the Plant Cream nationwide.

Defying Dairy for Decades

Owned by the food giant Upfield, Country Crock began selling margarine spreads in 1945. Nearly 80 years later, the brand remains one of the top-selling butter alternative companies in the United States. While most previous plant-based spreads did not feature vegan labels, Country Crock is changing its marketing strategies. The brand debuts its Plant Butter selection in 2019, marking the first time the company included a vegan label. The Plant Butter line features Olive Oil, Avocado Oil, and Almond Oil varieties.

The margarine brand recently hosted a campaign entitled “We Defied Dairy” that showcases the products as rivals to conventional dairy. The campaign features TV spots and online features that prove that its Plant Cream and Plant Butter worked just as well as cow-based dairy products. The campaign also emphasized the sustainable value of its plant-based selections.

“Our mission is to make people happier and healthier with great tasting plant-based products that are better for the planet,” Upfield North America Chief Marketing Officer Brian Orlando said VegNews in a previous interview. “Consumers are choosing plant-based alternatives to traditional dairy-based products for a variety of reasons, including health, environmental, and ethical. We are deeply committed to bringing consumers a broad range of innovative products that are advancing the role of plant-based foods in people’s lives. Our goal is to make it easier for consumers to make good dietary choices by giving them delicious, high performing, and better-for-you plant-based options.”

Ditching Dairy is Better for Your Health

Country Crock joins a growing list of brands such as Oatly, Ripple, and Tache that deliver more sustainable, healthier milk products. Research shows that reducing dairy consumption provides long-lasting health benefits that reduce the risk of fatal or chronic diseases later in life. Consuming dairy frequently can increase the risk of heart disease and cancer. Most consumers drink milk to improve bone health, but dairy provides less effective calcium than alternative plant-based sources.

This June, a new study concluded that there is a significant link between dairy consumption and prostate cancer. The study stated that drinking milk could increase the risk of prostate cancer by 60 percent. The study from Loma Linda University emphasized that regular consumption presented the most risk when compared to zero or minimal consumption.

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