Soy milk is made by soaking soy beans in water for several hours, blending the soaked beans with water and then filtering the liquid to remove any solid particles. The finished product contains zero lactose, meaning it is not actually milk, but is instead a blended soy drink.
Depending on the manufacturer, some soy milk products are made using raw soybeans that are soaked in water, while others use beans that are cooked for a specified period of time. For those that use cooked soybeans, this takes place after the soaked beans have been blended with water.
In most cases, the manufacturer adds sugar and possibly other flavorings to the finished product in order to improve its flavor. One of the most common additives in soy milk is vanilla, but there are several different flavors of soy milk on the market.
Soy milk can provide many essential vitamins and minerals and is considered to be an acceptable milk replacement for vegans. However, soy only contains a small amount of calcium, which is why many soy milk products are fortified with additional calcium to make up for this. In fact, some fortified soy milks contain as much as 50 percent more calcium that cow's milk.