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Anyone know why soy yogurt is disappearing?

So I ordered a case of Whole Soy yogurt from my food coop, and it turned out to be out of stock. Not too unusual, only a little annoying. Then I went to Trader Joe's--also gone. They told me out of stock for at least a week. So sent my husband to Whole Foods, and guess what? No soy yogurt at all. What the heck is up? Someone on a vegan forum said it had something to do with not being able to use the word "yogurt," but actually I think the TJs version just said "cultured non-dairy" something or other. Is soy yogurt gone forever? I don't eat dairy and I kind of can't stand that coconut stuff.

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  1. It's been disappearing here (Bay Area) for a while. I've asked at Trader Joe's, and they don't know the reason. The brands slowly started disappearing from Whole Foods a few months ago, and the dairy guy said the almond milk yogurts are gone, as well.

    I can't stand the coconut stuff, either.

    Whole Soy (I don't like their yogurt--the plain is too bitter, and they use cane sugar in the rest of their products, while Nancy's uses agave, and Wildwood's plain tastes just fine) moved to a new facility and had trouble ramping up production, among other things (http://www.wholesoyco.com/blog).

    I miss my soygurt.

    1 Reply
    1. re: quolivere

      I think itt has to do w/ food trends. Soy used to be considered a power food and people were wary of dairy. Now, gluten free is the trend and everything is gluten free. I'm not saying people are all doing it as a trend but enough are to drive the market.

    2. I buy Stoneyfield brand and Whole Foods and they're only carrying 2 flavors now instead of 4. I noticed that the Whole Soy area was half empty last time, but didn't really think more about it. I'll have to keep my eye on it!

      1. If most of it is as awful as the one I tried then its pretty obvious why its disappearing.

        6 Replies
        1. re: KaimukiMan

          Not all of us have the option of eating dairy-based yogurt. I'm allergic to dairy--not lactose-intolerant, but mouth-swells-up allergic. If dairy-eaters can choose from a huge wall of yogurt varieties--including the bizarre amplification of the Greek yogurt category--isn't there room for a few soy varieties?

          1. re: quolivere

            the reason i first tried soy yogurt in the first place is because I have a mild dairy allergy myself. I was actually weaned on soy-milk, back in the dark ages (1950's) when soy milk was not easy to find. If I eat more than a minor amount of dairy over an extended period I beak-out (wish someone had figured that out when i was in high school.) But the stuff I tried - no doubt some off brand - was really horrible.

            1. re: quolivere

              It sounds as if the product is disappearing and may get harder to find, so maybe, if it's as easy as making regular yogurt, that's the best option?

              Googled this up, using soy yogurt, not dairy starters: http://sweethealthyliving.com/2012/08...

              1. re: mcf

                I've tried making soy yogurt in the past, and the results have been less than salubrious...I don't remember what brand I used, but it was quite some time ago, so there weren't as many choices. I've been considering trying it again.

                1. re: quolivere

                  The article makes some recommendations that might help to produce better results, if it comes to that.

            2. re: KaimukiMan

              After almost 20 years, I don't even remember what dairy yogurt tastes like. Clearly, tastes differ--I find Stonyfield almost intolerably gluey, but Whole Soy is thick and creamy. (And since both Trader Joe's and Whole Soy are out of stock, I think we now know who makes Trader Joe's.)

              I did eventually find that Whole Soy site too--good to know it's a resolvable issue.

            3. I'm very disappointed. I just was looking at the O'Soy site, to calculate my weight watchers points for a container of their yogurt. The live cultures in their yogurt are milk based. The whole point of soy yogurt, to me, is that it not contain milk products.

              1 Reply
              1. re: jujuthomas

                I noticed that, as well, and I totally agree.

              2. I'm just checking out the Whole Soy site - in light of my disappointment with O'Soy - their latest blog post from yesterday says that their co-packer closed doors with only 3 days notice. looks like they are working through it...

                http://www.wholesoyco.com/blog

                1. I think the Soy Fad has run its course. Gluten Free is pushing it off the shelves.

                  I do get amused to see so many products labeled "Gluten Free" that never had any to begin with. It was like the "Cholesterol Free" thing 20+ years ago.

                  9 Replies
                  1. re: Candy

                    Soy is not a fad for those with dairy allergies, the lactose intolerant, vegan (the recipes without casein), and those needing to cut down their saturated fat content less expensively. Nor is Gluten Free a fad for celiacs. But what does one have to do with the other?

                    You'd be surprised to find out what isn't be gluten free -- that you think should be -- thanks to farming practices, shared processing equipment, and shared facility contamination!

                    "Cholesterol Free" wasn't so much a fad as a sales gimmick that was found out by the public to have little to no effect on HDL and LDL numbers. They were adding a lot of sugar and other junk to products to mask the inferior taste, when they should have just been lowering the sugar, fat, salt and chemical content.

                    As long as products are related to health conditions which have no instant cure, you'll see these categories for a lot longer than 20 years in the stores.

                    1. re: GF_Al

                      It's a matter of economics.

                      Generally, the portion of a population that has dietary issues with a particular ingredient is fairly small. Substitute versions of produces (veggie burgers, gluten free cakes, soy yoghurt) are often inferior in taste to the original (or are percieved to be by those who don't have to eat it) and are often more expensive to produce. So things like soy yoghurt or gluten free flour tend to be niche markets.

                      If a particular dietary restriction is trendy and a lot of people are adopting it, like gluten free at the moment, or carb free a decade ago, then it becomes economically advantageous to produce and market products to accommodate it. So you see a lot of gluten free products in the market, and gluten free menus at restaurants.

                      Once that particular diet falls out of trendiness, though, the market plummets back down to people who genuinely can't eat the original version, and the production and availability plummet in turn.

                      For example, ovo-lacto vegetarianism has established itself widely enough to be well catered to - veganism (a much more extreme diet) not so much. In areas with a large Jewish or Muslim population, kosher or halal products tend to be easy to find, otherwise not so much.

                      I predict that in a decade, gluten free will have fallen out of popularity. Gluten free products will still be available, probably at a slightly higher rate than a decade ago, but will not be nearly so prevalent as they are now, particularly for perishable goods, where a high demand is particularly important.

                      1. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                        Interesting theory. I have a theory of my own for this decade.

                        Instead of returning to simple recipes, companies will continue to use heartier strains of frankenwheat, carrageenan thickeners, antibiotics, chemical pesticides, saturated oils, non-organics, GMOs, and other non-pronouncibles in the name of better cravability (addictive flavor), texture, shelf life and profits for the masses who will continue to gobble them up in the form cheap pizzas, fries, "cheese (aka modified cheese food product slices) burgers," overprocessed breads, snack food, cronuts, and more. These and other environmental causes will contribute to creating more weaker immune systems and dietary tract issues that will lead to more allergies and immunity disorders like celiac disease. Many are out there now that are undiagnosed celiacs. But by then more people will be aware of it and more will be diagnosed. Not just by 2- or 3x either. These type things tend to escalate on a curve. Then there is the gluten-sensitive population, as well. They're the ones that perform more alertly and with more energy on the gluten-free diet, but aren't currently threatened by gluten. There are also the athletes that are gluten-free for better performance.

                        Think about how no one heard of celiac disease two generations ago, Neither did anyone have the current kind of marketed American food available then. Nor the environmental issues or over prescribing of medications.There are a lot of things that could be causing it. We can control the ones that are put in the mouth. But we have little personal control over the others.

                        Celiac and other gluten/immunity related allergies aren't going away. They're getting stronger and the consumers weaker, thanks to the processing-for-maximum-profit world we live in. If that can be cleaned up, your theory might have a chance.

                        As to the economics... why bother at all, over a current one percent celiac market? Why do Pepsi and Coke fight over the 1-3% zero-carb (or other small) market? Why are so many restaurants adding gluten-free menus? Why are sports arenas beginning to add gluten-free items and beers?

                        With Pepsi and Coke it's about surrendering any sales to the competition and in volume profits add up. Restauranteurs are realizing that the person with the dietary issue in a group generally dictates where the whole group will -- or won't -- go... whether it's just a couple, a family, a table of friends or an office party outing. Any group could be the difference in breaking even on any given night. A good special diet dining experience also creates loyalty. The restaurants purchase some of these specialty items, too.

                        Go to a sporting event of, say, 40,000. With an average of one percent (closer to one and a third now) of full celiacs ONLY, not buying any gf products -- that's 400+ people that are eating and drinking little to nothing of what they're selling in concessions -- for every game of the season.

                        Finally, I admit that a lot of the early gluten-free products were pretty bad. But many categories have improved greatly. Breads are better, Frozen entrees are better. Desserts are better. I've had some gf beers lately that my beer-drinking aficionado friends couldn't tell they were gluten free and actually like. Costs are higher, because volumes are lower and ingredient quality is usually better.

                        If the companies can keep their recipes universal, they can make foods and beverages that appeal to all. For example, flourless chocolate cake is basically four ingredients: chocolate, eggs, sugar and butter. You can add a couple other ingredients like vanilla or coffee to make it unique, but it's simple and everyone would enjoy it. Why complicate it with gluten. No need to mess with a regular and a gf version with different pricing. There's your economics for you.

                        BTW, the only diet you mentioned that is a trend is the low carb, because it's for weight loss. Kosher and halal have been around a couple thousand years, so fairly stable numbers. And vegetarianism has been around even longer.

                        Though it seemed to just catch on recently because of it's increase in interest and numbers (for health, energy and political reasons), true 'veganism' (under that name) has been around about 50 years or so, but had been practiced long ago. The latter two and shades between, for most Americans, I consider lifestyle choices. Some may test it out for a while and drop it, but if they like it, will stick with it for years or indefinitel

                        1. re: GF_Al

                          "BTW, the only diet you mentioned that is a trend is the low carb, because it's for weight loss."

                          Not so. It's gained momentum because low fat, high carb induces metabolic syndrome and diabetes and low carb controls, prevents and reverses damage from them even without weight loss or meds. It's the only diet proven to do so.

                          Humans can survive on nothing but protein and fat in robust good health and die without them. There are no essential carbs in human biology. Some are healthful, but none are required and more folks are dying of their use.

                          I've known a few celiac folks for decades.

                          1. re: mcf

                            "If a particular dietary restriction is trendy and a lot of people are adopting it, like ... carb free a decade ago,...."

                            "Not so. It's gained momentum because low fat, high carb induces metabolic syndrome and diabetes and low carb controls, prevents and reversed damage from them even without weight loss or meds."

                            So is the carb diet a decade-old trend or _not_ a trend that will always be necessary for the health and well-being for a segment of the population?

                            If not, then you have not mentioned any comparable trends to support your theory. My original point was to Candy that compared the Gluten-Free diet to Soy and Cholesterol-Free as all trendy fads. Reread my original post.

                            1. re: GF_Al

                              Increasing protein and carbs, especially grains and sugars, is producing preventive results that cannot be ignored, though grain, sugar and drug lobbies are throwing everything against it, including buying off the diabetes and heart assns. Yes it will stick as long as we can learn to ignore cholesterol lowering instead of healthy ratios and glucose control as an outcome, stop restricting natural, healthy fats.

                              The changes that led to the disastrous grain based food pyramids were wrought not by scientists, but by misguided politics. http://www.healthy-eating-politics.co...

                              Real world clinical results matter here, every bit as much as with gluten/celiac. And they tell the same kind of tale; cut the carbs, cut the epidemic that turned adult onset diabetes into a pediatric disease.

                        2. re: tastesgoodwhatisit

                          I actually saw smoked pork chops labeled "Gluten Free" in a major grcery store last week.

                          1. re: Candy

                            I have seen stuff like this too...once on a package of bacon, and once on a rotisserie chicken. :-/

                            1. re: Candy

                              Ha! I'm waiting for the "gluten free" label to show up on celery....along with $1 more retail price...

                      2. soy in general is "under attack" because of GMO issues.

                        1. According to their website, far from being a disappearing food trend or dissolving under attack from the anti-GMO crowd, Whole Soy is simply in the process of moving to a new production facility and product should be back shortly. Since they're pretty much the major manufacturer, supply has been disrupted everywhere.

                          4 Replies
                          1. re: JulesNoctambule

                            But this doesn't explain why I can't find Wildwood, Nancy's, or other brands anywhere.

                            1. re: quolivere

                              It's my understanding that they do production for several companies.

                              1. re: JulesNoctambule

                                Wildwood and Nancy's both used different formulas. This weekend I went to the Whole Foods closest to my house and they had Nancy's plain soy and flavored. Unfortunately, the plain is now in a smaller container for the same price (24 instead of 32 oz). The little ones were on sale for $1/ea, though. I told them how overjoyed I was to find soygurt back in stock.

                            2. re: JulesNoctambule

                              Thanks for the facts and not just opinion.

                            3. The Whole soy yogurt is building their new plant. They should have it up in running sometime in the fall. http://www.wholesoyco.com/blog/item/o...

                              Trader Joes, I Have no idea.

                              1. low demand, maybe

                                it sucks when you like something and yet no one wants to buy it and it disappears

                                1. I thought I was going crazy! I don't mind the coconut version, but it doesn't have enough protein per serving for my nutrition goals. I miss it too! Glad to know it might be around again in the fall ...

                                  I have also noticed a lack of all brands in all stores I've visited, not just TJ's & WholeSoy. Even my local Whole Foods has nothing. Where else are you guys finding Nancy's and Wildwood (while I wait for WholeSoy to finish moving)?

                                  1 Reply
                                  1. re: galeforcewind

                                    In the Bay Area, Whole Foods and New Leaf markets (local chain)--but that's it. Maybe if you ask your WF they'll bring it in? I do miss Wildwood--don't know what happened there.

                                  2. Whole Soy is under construction. They should be up in running in october or november. Check out their website.

                                    1. I am so glad to find this string. I'm allergic to cow's milk, don't love coconut milk yogurt and have been wondering why all the soy yogurt has been disappearing from all the shelves all summer. (Regular grocery stores around me used to have it, as well as Trader Joe's--not now!) I will now have to check into this O'Soy milk-based culture situation, too, but maybe it doesn't matter if it's not even available!

                                      1. I can still buy it in my local supermarket but only in flavored varieties when I only need plain to mimic sour cream! GRRRR

                                        My theory about dwindling soy yogurt might be because of all the conflicting health warnings to women ( major yogurt consumers) about soybean products.

                                        Women(major yogurt consumers) have a complicated relationship with soy.

                                        1. Just buy Soya milk. Warm it to room temperature..it would be better to heat up soya milk to high temperature and allow it cool.. once the milk comes to room temperature add yogurt (dairy)....leave for 10 hrs..you will have your soya yogurt... Dont eat all the yogurt..leave it some in the refrigerator. When you want next time..add this soya yogurt so that it is vegan friendly...you can buy cultured bacteria also, instead of dairy yoghurt for first time, but then its a big search in the shops for those. You try with yeast..might work..if it fails first time with yeast just take the precipitate and put it the soya milk, next time it might work.

                                          1. I just got a case of Silk! Heaven! Still no WholeSoy, but this will tide me over for a bit.

                                            1 Reply
                                            1. re: sciencediet

                                              Sciencediet, I tried it also, it was not bad. The fruit flavored ones taste like jelly. The vanilla one was pretty good. I think it cost $1.29 at my local grocery for a tiny cup. Wholesoy was $3.99 at the wholefoods for a large tub. Can't wait till they come back.

                                            2. I agree that soy yogurt is hard to find and the last time I checked, the natural foods store we frequent didn't even have much. Not sure what's going on. My local Safeway carries Silk and O'Soy by Stoneyfield. I thought perhaps Stoneyfield was better and tried it a number of times, but the texture was just awful....OK taste, but watery and grainy. I'm now happily eating Silk brand and loving it. It's creamy and is thick enough with a great taste. Usually only available in strawberry and blueberry.

                                               
                                              1. Help.. does anyone know a nondairy yogurt that is unsweetened. I used to get a soy one and cant find it or any unsweetened yogurt. I checked PCC and whole foods. All full of sugar.

                                                10 Replies
                                                1. re: camanok

                                                  I've tried a lot of non dairy yogurts and have never seen one that was low sugar, or even just plain unflavored.
                                                  This recipe is a a way to make your own and therefore control the sugar:
                                                  http://wakingupvegan.com/2012/09/23/h...

                                                  1. re: camanok

                                                    WholeSoy's website does advertise an unsweetened plain version, if they ever start shipping it again!

                                                    1. re: sciencediet

                                                      seriously. I looked at whole foods 2 weeks ago and nothin!

                                                      1. re: jujuthomas

                                                        http://www.sodeliciousdairyfree.com/p...

                                                        1. re: camanok

                                                          Beware of yogurts and other products with carrageenan (a non-nutritive filler ingredient). Already banned in Europe, it's used for texture and cosmetic purposes, but has been linked to several health issues from IBS to cancer. But even if it were completely safe, would you want to pay for all yogurt or some yogurt and a lot of cheap empty filler? It can also be listed under several other names. Some SoDelicious products use it, but I have not seen it in Whole Soy or O'Soy products.

                                                          1. re: GF_Al

                                                            And check your premium or not so premium pet food for it, too. Hard to find even expensive brands without it, though I was able to with help.

                                                            1. re: mcf

                                                              I realize that the carrageenan post is now months old but it's chock full of misinformation. Carrageenan has not been "banned" outright in Europe, it has been banned from use in infant formula. There was no evidence found to ban it from other uses.

                                                              The studies that link carrageenan to health issues were conducted on animals with a non-food-approved form of carrageena, poligeenan. Carrageenan has not been decisively linked to these ill effects in humans.

                                                              1. re: ferret

                                                                I didn't say it was banned anywhere, so why are you replying to me?

                                                                But I'd rather buy stuff without additives I have no reason to trust yet, including carageenan.

                                                                http://www.cornucopia.org/wp-content/...

                                                            2. re: GF_Al

                                                              BS! Carageenan is seaweed, a perfectly natural product, used as a thickener.

                                                              1. re: pikawicca

                                                                I'm not sure about carrageenan's safety, either. I've heard/read many bad things about it over the years. I don't care for the texture of it in things like ice cream.

                                                    2. I'm late to this thread, but I covered this here:

                                                      http://edvfood.wordpress.com/2013/08/...

                                                      Whole Soy (also Amande), and Trader Joe's Organic (which appears to be repackaged Whole Soy): supply chain issues.

                                                      This just happened to take place shortly after a lot of consolidation and switching from soy to other bases for non-dairy yogurt.

                                                      Silk is ok, and I've just recently seen Nancy's Cultured Soy (which has a plain, unlike Silk) at Whole Foods.

                                                      1 Reply
                                                      1. re: edvfood

                                                        Yeah, I just stopped in to Whole Foods and got a few of the Nancy's. They taste weird. I hope Whole Soy gets going soon.

                                                      2. I just bought some at Trader Joe's today!! Whole Soy is back in production!!
                                                        http://www.wholesoyco.com/blog/item/w...

                                                        I'm SO HAPPY!!!

                                                        1. I recently tried and love this one, Nancy's...from Whole Foods but cannot find it there any longer...no caaragenen or nasties: http://www.nancysyogurt.com/index.php... can't find it there now!

                                                          4 Replies
                                                          1. re: Val

                                                            Maybe they were just out of stock, my whole foods in nyc had at least 6 different flavors of nancy's- including the elusive plain as of yesterday.

                                                            1. re: Ttrockwood

                                                              thanks...I know it has been a few months. I can also just ask at the customer service desk.

                                                            2. re: Val

                                                              I'll have to check my whole foods for that Nancy's. 6 flavors? That's like a soy yogurt bonanza... usually i only see blueberry and strawberry.

                                                              1. re: jujuthomas

                                                                The largest selection i've seen of nancy's is at whole foods- they even had a larger multi serving container! Other smaller markets may be able to order a specific flavor for you ....

                                                            3. Because it's made from soy.