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As you grow older and change your perspective on life, you may decide that becoming vegan is what you want to do. This is all well and good but when you revisit your childhood memories of all the candy and treats you used to eat, you may be disappointed to find out that some of them are not vegan-friendly and you can’t relive that part of your life. So if you are vegan and want to get some sugary nostalgia, you may be wondering are Fruit Roll ups vegan?
Table of Contents
What are Fruit Roll-ups?
Fruit Roll-ups are fruit snacks that debuted in grocery stores and supermarkets in America in 1983. They are stretchy, gummy candy with a fruity flavor that is rolled into a tube and lined with cellophane so that the candy does not stick to itself. They are manufactured by General Mills and are distributed by the Betty Crocker brand in the USA while being distributed by the Uncle Tobys brand in Australia. A similar product exists in the UK known as a fruit winder, and this is under the brand Kelloggs.
There are a lot of different flavors of Fruit Roll-ups for those that have a sweet tooth. These flavors are;
- Fruit Roll-ups Flavor Mixers
- Fruit Roll-ups Strawberry Sensation
- Fruit Roll-ups strawberry Sour
- Fruit Roll-ups Jolly Rancher
- Fruit Roll-ups Tropical Tie-Dye
- Fruit Roll-ups Blastin’ Berry Hot Colors
- Fruit Roll-ups Strawberry Craze Mini Rolls
- Fruit Roll-ups Mini Rolls Wildberry Punch
- Fruit Roll-ups Variety Pack
As you can see, anyone who likes fruit candies will be pleasantly surprised by how diverse the different flavors are.
What ingredients are in Fruit Roll-ups?
The ingredients will change depending on the flavor you choose but for the most part, the ingredients used in Fruit Roll-ups are;
Corn Syrup, Dried Corn Syrup, Sugar, Pear Puree Concentrate, Palm Oil. Citric acid, Sodium Citrate, Fruit Pectin, Monoglycerides, Malic Acid, Dextrose, Vitamin C (Ascorbic Acid), Acetylated Monoglycerides, Natural Flavors, Food Colorants (Red 40, Yellow 5, Yellow 6, Blue 1)
While this list may be clear of animal products or animal fats, some of the ingredients are considered non-vegan by strict vegans. By this I mean, some of the ingredients are a bit of a grey area on where they stand in terms of being vegan or not.
Non vegan ingredients
The most vegan unfriendly ingredient on this list is the artificial coloring used in the food. The red 40 and yellow 6 especially are notorious for not being safe for vegans. This is mostly due to the animal testing that is associated with it. There is no certainty if this particular brand is using animal testing with these colors but it has been known to happen in the past, and this animal cruelty is why a lot of vegans will avoid these colors in food. There are plenty of vegan-friendly alternatives in terms of testing these colors, so until the testing is stopped and ceases to harm animals, vegans will boycott these food colorings.
Sugar is another huge grey area due to the uncertainty of where the sugar is from. Cane sugar is used in candy as the most common type of sugar and is usually refined before use so that it works better in recipes. This refining process involves bleaching the sugar so that it has a pristine white color, which is not an issue in itself but the ingredient used to bleach the sugar is bone char from dead cows. There is no proof that the bone char is left in the sugar after this process, but it is still considered non-vegan as it has used an animal product in the production of it. The reason this is a huge grey area is that there is no way to know what type of sugar a company uses in its products, so by all means the sugar may be completely vegan-friendly or it may have dead cow in it. There is just no way to know for sure.
Palm oil has caused a big controversy for not being vegan as the increase in farming has led to a lot of deforestation and the destruction of animal habitats such as orangutans. The main reason why this is controversial is that some companies are RSPO members, which means they have signed an agreement to only use sustainable palm oil. A lot of companies are doing this, but you have to do research and check first. Thankfully, General Mills are RSPO members and by extension, that means Fruit Roll-ups contain vegan-friendly palm oil.
Can Fruit Roll-ups be eaten by vegans?
Many vegans may choose to eat Fruit Roll-ups as they contain no dairy products, no animal products, and are entirely gluten-free. However, strict vegans will choose not to eat them as a Fruit Roll-up is colored by artificial coloring, which includes colors that are known to have been tested on animals in the past. They also have a natural flavor in some of the flavors, but other types can be flavored with artificial flavorings. The issue with artificial flavorings is that they have no information on what is included, so it could be animal products or at least have animals connected to the production of the artificial flavors. The natural flavor mostly comes from fruit juice being used in the recipe, which by itself is okay for a vegan diet.
You can also check out our article Is Halal Vegan.
Fruit Roll-ups Vegan Alternatives
If you are a strict vegan, or just want a vegan alternative to Fruit Roll-ups, then you will be pleased to know that they do exist. There are a lot of brands that do fruit snacks similar to Fruit Roll-ups without artificial colors and animal products. Some of these brands also do other vegan products which are worth looking at for future reference if you ever fancy some different vegan snacks.
The best brand by far for vegan snacks and candy is the Uk company known as Bear snacks. They are completely vegan with a natural flavor that only comes from freshly grown fruit and veg. They are perfect for any vegan diets and are an insanely tasty fruit snack. They have a line of sweets known as ‘yoyos’ which are essentially Fruit Roll-ups.
Are Fruit Roll-ups healthy?
After looking at the ingredients such as pear puree concentrate, corn syrup, dried corn syrup, citric acid, ascorbic acid, and all the other ingredients, you may be wondering if Fruit Roll-ups are healthy for you to eat. Like with anything, the odd one will not harm you but maybe you want to eat a few in a short period, I won’t judge.
They are a good source of vitamin C and only have 40 calories in them as most of the ingredients are natural. They are surprisingly healthy although they still have a decent amount of sugar in them, which can be a concern for anyone who watches their sugar intake. Fruit Roll-ups are also entirely gluten-free and provide some energy for you.
FAQ – Are Fruit Roll-Ups Vegan?
Do Fruit Roll-ups have gelatin?
There is no gelatin in Fruit Roll-ups as they are made from fruit, corn syrup, and natural flavors. They are completely free of gelatin thanks to their natural ingredients that come mostly from fruit.
Are Fruit By The Foot Roll-ups vegan?
Similar to Fruit Roll-ups, Fruit by the Foot can be considered vegan as there are no animal products in the ingredients. However, the artificial colors used can be linked to animal testing which is why a lot of strict vegans will avoid either fruit snack.