How Sustainable are Meal Replacement Shakes?

In the modern day it’s more crucial than ever that we all do our part for the environment. This is something we at Rootana are very passionate about, and as such we’ve taken it into account at every stage of our meal replacement shake, ensuring on as many levels that are measurable, that we have minimized our carbon footprint. The question is, how sustainable can meal replacement shakes really be?

Today we’ll be answering that very question and exploring not only why Rootana is so sustainable, but why meal replacement shakes in general can help you to lower your climate impact.

Climate-Friendly Formula

One of the ways Rootana stands out from the crowd is with it’s focused formula of just 9, real food ingredients. We’ve trimmed the bloat of a lot of the competition and only included something if it was absolutely necessary. These ingredients are Oats, Pea protein, Sunflower oil, Coconut sugar, Golden Milled Flaxseed, Sunflower Lecithin, Guar gum, Xanthan Gum, and a blend of 27 essential vitamins and minerals. 

Now of course there were many reasons why we chose these ingredients. First of all, they taste delicious, as our original flavour shows. Secondly, they provide Rootana with an extremely rich nutritional profile. Finally, they’re highly sustainable and as such, they’re great for the plant.

Let’s take oats for example, which are highly sustainable as, with no pesticides used, they present no harm to the environment at all, with no damage to the air, soil or water used in their production. When it comes to water as well, oats require significantly less than many competing ingredients, such as almonds. In fact, almonds require 6 times the amount of water than oats [1]. 

It’s a similar story with the yellow split peas we use for our pea protein. These are an incredibly sustainable crop to grow and in fact, if used in crop rotation properly, can be extremely efficient as they actually bring nitrogen back into the soil, enriching it for future crops. They’re also another low water crop, using an average of 34mm less water than crops such as wheat.

Packaging Problems and Plastic

Something that is still a huge problem across the globe are single-use plastics. You might not immediately relate to this so let’s put it into perspective and just put ourselves in the shoes of an average person making an average weekly show at their local supermarket. Everything from pre-packaged fruit and veg and deli meat is either kept in completely plastic packaging, or has been wrapped in plastic in some way. You then bring it all to the register to ring it up, and all of that disposable plastic packaging gets packed into disposable plastic bags to transport home. Sounds bad enough, but to really put it into perspective you need to realize that on average, people visit the grocery store 8 times per month [2].

This is why we’ve limited our packaging to the absolute minimum amount of plastic possible. Don’t believe us? Look in pretty much any other meal replacement shake (or even protein shake) and what do you find? A single plastic scoop. With Rootana we only offer metal scoops that are designed to last you a lifetime, along with a metal shaker that is similarly designed to last and is certifiably non-toxic.


Is Replacing My Meals Really Better For The Environment?

Well to answer it frankly, yes it is. There’s lots to take into consideration when looking at sustainability and it’s often (intentionally) not very easy to see. To make our point lets compare Rootana to say, a simple pasta dish with chicken, and we won’t even discuss sourcing as we’ve already mentioned how sustainable our ingredients are. Let’s take a different perspective and instead look at them simply as meals.

Shelf Life

This hardly requires much explanation but let’s break it down a bit. The pasta will last a while to be fair, but unless you’ve got canned tomatoes they’ll last at best a week in the fridge, and the chicken will last about 4 days max. In contrast to that, even without any additives to extend the shelf life, Rootana is likely to outlast any food if it’s stored correctly, making it a great choice for a zombie apocalypse.


Speaking of storage, has anyone ever heard of a cool, dry place? Because that’s all you need for Rootana, which will be at home in any cupboard, pantry or drawer. Keeping our previous example going, where you can get away with pasta in the cupboard along with tomatoes if they’re canned, chicken has to go in the fridge to stay fresh. Though it may seem like a small thing, everything adds up to be quite significant, so it’s worth keeping it all in mind. Fridges cost energy, and until we have a completely renewable energy source, that energy comes at a cost to the environment, and if you somehow don’t cook your meal within the 4 day timeframe the resources are wasted.


Finally we have preparation, and it’s such a simple process to prepare Rootana that you can write it out in a single sentence, without any grammar: You just scoop it into the mixer and shake it. It really is that simple, making it an exceptionally convenient choice. This helps sustainability in many ways, as first of all you save all the energy it would take to cook something, secondly you have a lot less washing up, meaning a lot less hot water is necessary. If you have a dishwasher you may even use it to clean up the pots, pans and plates required for your meal. Rootana takes five seconds to rinse under the tap and then you’re done, especially if you use our metal shaker and metal scoop.

Conclusion – Why Does Any of This Matter?

Finally we get down to the center of all of this, and that’s why? Why would we have gone through all of this trouble? The simplest answer to that is because the environment we’re trying to protect is the very one we call home, and it’s vitally important that we take proper care of it for the future generations to come. It’s very easy to say that it doesn’t affect you so why bother, but it’ll affect your kids, and their kids, and their kids… so let’s just get our act together and start taking this seriously.

Even still, we’re seeing the effects of climate change all around the earth today, so as we said at the beginning, it’s more important than ever that we all do our part, and making more sustainable food choices is as good a place to start as any. 


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