Good Morning! I hope your Wednesday is off to a pleasant start! If you’re like me, one of my favorite meals is breakfast. When I was much younger, (think middle through high school years), I was not a breakfast-eater by any means. In the mornings, I was cranky, tired and eager to return to sleep and therefore eating a healthy breakfast was the furthest thing from my mind (of course, I often regretted this mid-day when I was ravenous and gobbling crackers, etc). That being said, nowadays, breakfast each morning is a staple and one I look forward to! Complete with a steaming mug of coffee and a banana, I tend to rotate my morning meal between cereal (a various assortment of types for variety and flavor!) with milk or yogurt (either non-fat Greek or nonfat traditional style).
Choosing the type of milk I add to my cereal and/or cook/bake with is one that can be rather involved, or at least one that requires some choice and thought. On any given day, a trip to the grocery store dairy department affords shoppers with a plethora of milk options. There is everything from traditional dairy (i.e. cow’s milk), coconut milk, almond milk, cashew milk, soy milk, combinations of almond-coconut or almond-cashew, and the list continues. Not only are there different flavors and types, but also an extensive brand list.
A couple months ago, while browsing the dairy department at my local grocery store, a uniquely-shaped, sleek, long-necked bottle caught my eye, reeling me in. Within minutes, I was opening the glass door, removing the intriguing bottle from the case. I was pleased to see it was almond milk (though there was an array of other types, as well) by the brand, Califia Farms. It was a brand I’d never heard of before, but given the claims imprinted on the bottle (unsweetened, non-GMO, environmentally-friendly, etc), I was sold and placed the bottle in my shopping cart, eager to return home to try it!
Soon after trying it in my cereal bowl, the Califia Farms line of milks were instantly added to my milk repertoire, making a point to place it in my cart the next time I shop. With a vast array of product lines and offerings, each experience with Califia Farms is bound to be a unique and exciting one! Thus, as I began to try more Califia Farms‘ products, I was thrilled beyond belief to be provided with the unique opportunity to sample one of their new holiday beverages (other holiday options includes: Peppermint Mocha, Holiday Nog, etc) – Pumpkin Spice Latte made with almond milk! As one of the biggest pumpkin fans around, their new Pumpkin Spice Latte combines nearly all my favorites; pumpkin, coffee, and almond milk! It is truly a one healthy treat in a cup! Plus, it is naturally-sweetened, low-calorie and refreshing. Upon trying it, I was instantly delighted, envisioning all I would enjoy it with (on its own as a refreshing, hydrating beverage, cooked into oatmeal for subtle pumpkin-java notes, added to smoothies, milkshakes – the possibilities are truly endless!). Plus, the flavor of pumpkin truly shines through with a subtle sweetness. It is a taste of the holidays in a glass!
As a brand, Califia Farms (www.califiafarms.com) is dedicated towards the community and it’s customers, operating as a transparent company who is honest in their practices and geared towards providing healthy, nourishing beverages. They are consistently active on several forms of social media (i.e. Facebook, Twitter – @CalifiaFarms, Pinterest, Instagram and also maintain their own blog- http://www.califiafarms.com/blog/ where they publish recipes featuring their products!).
Company Background: (accessed via http://www.califiafarms.com)
- A grower-owned company based in San Joaquin Valley, California, according to their official website (www.califiafarms.com), Califia Farms was founded by Greg Steltenpohl, with a goal of “creating the most remarkable company of the future, powered by plants.”
- The unique name, Califia Farms, comes from the warrior queen, Califia, who ruled over California, as an earth goddess, storyteller and mother. The warrior queen is identified as an icon of California’s “heritage and healthful bounty.”
- 100% of coffee in their beverages is grown on Rainforest Alliance Certified Farms (meaning farmers follow more sustainable agricultural practices, protecting forests, rivers, soils and wildlife. Workers are also afforded respectable/better wages and living conditions)
- Community Oriented – Supports Xerces Society to support Bee Biodiversity; works with BOXSMART to reduce waste and recycle up to 20,000 lbs of paper per month.
- All cartons of Califia Farms‘ products are 100% recyclable, so not only can you feel good about what you’re drinking, but you can also help in keeping the environment beautiful!
General Califia Farms‘ Product Information/Facts:
- All products are non-GMO, with forthcoming plans for organic versions, as well.
- Products are acceptable for cooking and can be used in identical ways as cow’s milk.
- All are Gluten-Free.
- 50% more calcium than cow’s milk (added by calcium carbonate)
- Fresh for 7-10 days within opening.
- Califia Farms‘ juices are freshly-squeezed and bottled at their own juice plant.
- Sweeteners used = pure cane sugar and/or monk fruit concentrate.
- By the end of 2015, Califia Farms will have an entire carrageenan-free portfolio.
Califia Farms Almond Milks:
- Unsweetened Vanilla
- Coconut Almond Milk
- Chocolate Coconut Almond Milk
- Barista Blend (coffee-creamer)
- Classic Cinnamon Horchata (new)
- Vanilla Coconut Horchata (new)
- Holiday Nog (new)
Califia Farms Single Serve Versions:
- Vanilla Protein
- Chocolate Protein
- Chocolate Almond Milk
- Vanilla Almond Milk
- Unsweetened Almond Milk
Califia Farms Coffee Creamers:
- Original Almond Milk
- Pecan Caramel
Califia Farms Cold Brew Coffees:
- Peppermint Mocha (new/seasonal)
- Pumpkin Spice Latte (new/seasonal)
- Concentrated Cold Brew (new)
- Cafe Latte
- Double Espresso
- Salted Caramel
- XX Espresso
- Mocha Mexica (new, single serve)
- Dirty Chai (new, single serve)
- Triple Shot (new, single serve)
- Cocoa Noir
Califia Farms Aqua Fresca (fruit drinks):
- Cranberry Cocktail (new, seasonal)
- Mango Chili Lime (new)
- Pineapple Ginger (new)
- Watermelon Ginger Lime
- Strawberry Basil
- Kiwi Cactus Lemonade
Califia Farms Citrus Juice:
- Tart Cherry Lemonade
- Lemon Limeade
- Orange Juice
So, there you have it! With an extensive product line, Califia Farms truly offers a beverage for everyone! To find out where Califia Farms is offered nearest you, be sure to check out their store locator via their website (califiafarms.com/store-locator). Happy Sipping!