Vegan Gummies:The Animal Free Alternative
Who doesn’t love gummies? I’m sure you all do! But what if you get to know that the gummies you consume are formulated by animal parts that are not eatable, sounds disgusting right?
Gummies manufactured using Gelatin as a common and essential ingredient define such gummy which traces back it’s sources to animals.
If you’re a pure vegetarian or for any reasons prefer avoiding animal based foods, do not be upset. Foreseeing the rising consumer demands, confectionery manufacturers have cooked up an organic plant based option for consuming your gummies without any doubt or hesitation. The only difference that arises here is in the ingredients used in the recipe and the important considerations to take while formulating a vegan gummy.
Reading this article you’ll be surprised to know how a plant source can create yummy gummies for you!
1.What Are Vegan Gummies?
Gummies that are made up of pure vegan sources such as vegetables and fruits, which are free from any of the animal constituents popular among consumers are known as plant based or vegan gummies.
These sweet eatables are formulated without gelatin , which is a collagenous gelling agent obtained from animal bones and ligaments, used in most common gummies. Vegan gummies are not composed of any of the animal products like dairy products, honey or beeswax, colouring agent like carmine, and some flavouring agents too.
Confectioners produce gummy candies that contain other ingredients which do not trouble the believes and likings of a vegetarian such as pectin, starch, carrageenan, agar agar, tapioca and others.
2.How Are Vegan Gummies The Good Option as Animal Free Alternative?
A labeled packaging of a vegan gummies packet often indicates that it’s ingredients are purely organic, derived from natural fruits and vegetables. So does it actually separate it any differently from a regular gummies packet which might not be plant based?
Yes, vegetarian gummies are much different than animal based gummies. They offer you perfect chewy, smooth, and good texture as a perfect animal free alternative. Additionally, the manufacturing process will entirely be similar but it shows some difference in their ingredients and nature of physical characteristics.
|VEGAN GUMMIES||NON-VEGAN GUMMIES|
|v VEGAN gummies are made up of ingredients for gelling such as Agar Agar, Carrageenan, Starch, Pectin, Konjac, Tapioca and Vegan gel.||v Unlike NON-VEGAN gummies composed of gelatin, beeswax, honey, dairy ingredients such as whey , casein etc.|
|v These VEGAN gummies are formulated using food coloring agents which are of plant origin. Such as green colour from spirulina obtained of blue-green algae, yellow colour from turmeric obtained of turmeric plant, shades of red like (red,pink, purple, magenta,maroon) from black carrot obtained of organic black carrot plant, shades of orange like (orange, peach, blood orange ) from annatto obtained of annatto seeds from achiote plant, blue colour from butterfly pea flower extract obtained of butterfly pea plant.||v Unlike NON-VEGAN gummies which are made of colourants which are extracted from animals like red colour from cochineal insects like beetles.|
|v Gummies that are manufactured using agar or pectin (vegan sources), have a much greater melting point.||v As compared to gelatin(non vegan source), which melts earlier.|
|v Pectin gummies are said to be softer and chewable owing to their high amount of polysaccharide chains which also makes them bearable to high temperature. These polysaccharides are found in citrus fruits and apples which makes them a suitable vegetarian’s choice.||v Whereas gelatin gummies are stretchable and chewy because of their proteinous fibres which make them easily thermoreversible. These proteins are obtained from animal hives, bones and ligaments making it unpreferable for vegans.|
3.What Are the Formulating Ingredients Making Up a Vegan Gummy?
You just read above ,the ingredients that differ due to their originated sources. The formulating constituents making up a vegan gummy are as follows:
Pectin can be defined as a fiber which is made up of polysaccharide chains taken from various fruits and vegetables likes oranges, lemons, apples etc. Excitingly, pectin gummies offer tender chewability and releases it’s flavors sooner than that released from gelatinous candies. When pectin is heated after addition of a liquid solvent it thickens to gel consistency. As pectin is not dissoluble in water at normal temperature, it needs to be cooked prior to setting for 15-20 minutes.
Carrageenan is an extract derived usually from red seaweed made up of polysaccharides. This substance is used as a thickening agent in replacement of gelatin, for vegan gummies. It offers soft,sweet and fruity bite which is used to make jellies. Drying time for carrageenan is quick as it solidifies in less time. Gummies made with carrageenan offers vibrant colour, great taste and high transparency.
AGAR AGAR POWDER
This substance is also derived from seaweed extract and can be used for gelatin substitute. Agar powder is a plant sourced hydrocolloid derivative which brings brittle and chewier texture to gummies. It doesn’t alter the taste of gummies and easily combine with flavourants to enhance the experience. Agar agar doesn’t need to be reformulated for constitution according to different ratios, as it is combined proportionally as gelatin.
Konjac is an edible part of root obtained from konjaku plant, rich in fibrous content. Due to high fiber amount it holds great health benefits too . It’s similarity can be matched with okra , and can be utilised as same purposes as is gelatin. . This substitute for gelatin in gummies has almost zero calories and no sugar content.
It is another alternative used for beeswax with the same purpose as beeswax is used in Non-Vegan gummies. Carnauba wax is obtained from carnauba plant and intended for it’s wide applications in polishing, food and cosmetics industry. It gives an alluring shape and texture to gummy candies and prevent them from sticking or melting. It can be added to vegan gummies as it’s source relates to plant.
4.Are Vegan Gummies Healthy?
As you know that the vegan gummies are composed of plants, they offer nutritious health benefits along with delicious taste to the consumers .
However people that are totally dependent on vegetarian diet and prefer taking vegan sources of gummies must notice this that they often lack essential and vital minerals such as Vitamin B12 and Vitamin D3. Vitamin B12 is often found richly in meat, fish and eggs which are not eaten by vegetarians. Vitamin D3 can be taken from sunlight or supplemental forms.
Vegan gummies do present enormous health benefits owing to their ingredients. Plants sources contain high amount of fibre, good sources of nutrients such as vitamins , minerals , carbohydrates and rich antioxidants. These promote overall well-being and fitness. You will be seeing below briefly the benefits of vegan gummies on health.
5.What are Benefits of Vegan Gummies?
Gummies that are made up of plant sources are packed with many versatile health benefits, owing to the variety of ingredients incorporated into them. These plants contain high amount of fibre, minimal or no fat and cholesterol, less calories, good sources of antioxidants and beneficial nutrients.
One of the greatest benefits of vegan gummies is they provide same fun and flavorful delicacy without any usage of animal based constituents.
In addition to being animal free, these gummies are also gluten free and free of allergens. It contains less calories making it an excellent choice for diet conscious people.
Gummies that are formulated of high fiber content such as pectin ,konjac and other plant sources aid in controlling your weight. They do so by keeping a check at your hunger as you are kept full for longer and thus avoid overeating. Additionally, it also maintains good gut health, boosts your immune system, prevents high cholesterol and controls sugar levels.
Plant based gummies containing vital nutrients and anti-oxidants may help to fight inflammation and eliminate harmful toxins from our body, making our cells healthier.
6.What Ingredients Should You Avoid As Animal sourced Gummies?
All that ingredients which combine to make a regular gummy is usually not appropriate for those who avoid animal based products. The biggest example is of Gelatin. Apart from this, many other additional components like beeswax or carnauba wax , some type of food colourings, sweeteners and added flavourings too shows their link to non vegetarian sources. You will see some of the ingredients below.
Gelatin is a colourless ingredient made up of collagen protein which is derived from various animal parts such as skin, bones, hive, ligaments and meat. It is usually taken from cow, pig and fish. Gelatin is used to make many food items like jellies, candies, pudding, other products like cosmetics, and in pharmaceutical items. It clearly is not for vegans!
Beeswax is obtained from bee hives . It has been used widely as a lubricant, in medical purposes and in food products including gummies. Oftentimes the gummies are coated with beeswax to give them a finishing lustrous shine and also prevent them from sticking together. It is also known to prolong gummie’s expiry date and preserve it’s taste.
FOOD COLOURING AGENTS
Interestingly almost many of the food colours used in gummies or other product are derived and extracted from plant’s sources which makes it none of the concern for vegan consumers. Although there is an exception in one colour which is known as Carmine . Carmine is taken from red beetles which produces bright red colour often used in many inks, paints, food colourings etc. Therefore it is not vegan.
BONE CHAR REFINED SUGAR
Although the sugars mostly refined are sourced from sugar beets or sugarcane , sometimes manufacturers use bone char to process and bleach it. Bone char is a powderous material obtained after boiling the bones of cattle. Even though the sugar does not directly contain bone char but the manufacturing process sometimes employ it to provide a different texture and taste. It is therefore unsuitable for vegans.
7.What Are the Challenges That Comes With Making Plant based Gummies?
There are some challenges which are faced by the manufacturers of gummies when switching from animal based gelling agent to a plant based option.
Let’s discuss them one by one.
Handling High Temperature For Formulation Viscosity of Vegan Gummies
Using Gelatin as a gelling agent, manufacturers know this already that it can be gelled earlier because of it’s lower formulation viscosity. Now adding another ingredient to replace gelatin, such as a plant based, formulation viscosity increases because of it’s higher melting viscosity(requires higher temperature). If higher temperatures aren’t handled well by the equipment, it can result in pre-gelation which may result in inconsistent texture in the form of clumps of the gummies.
Proper Hydration At Suitable Maintained Temperature
It’s mandatory to set a suitable temperature for providing hydration to plant based gummy formulation. The temperature is to be set at 85°C , but make sure you do not put pectin in boiling water which may result in agglomeration of particles and earlier setting of pectin prior to mixing.
Adding Too Much Sugar To High Ester Pectin Might Cause Improper Hydration
Adding sugar to your plant based gummy formula will definitely be helpful in preventing clumps formation and ensuring good consistency. But there applies a condition over here, you must be careful while adding sugar to pectin in the availability of water. As incorporating too much sugar to high methoxyl (lot’s of water bonds) might cause improper hydration as more sugar will be bonded with water particles instead of pectin.
Maintenance Of pH Is Important To Prevent Breakdown Of Pectin
Mostly plant based ingredients are highly sensitive to acidic substances. If the pH is acidic for a long time even prior to addition of citric acid or ascorbic acid, it may cause pectin to degrade and pre-gelation may occur. High ester pectin will degrade at alkaline conditions. Low ester pectin will be of less strength at acidic pH less than 3.
8.How To Overcome the Challenges That Comes with Making Plant based Gummies?
Proper handling of higher temperature by the cooking vessels and processing equipments through jacketed layers ensures that early gelation does not ruin the pectin before setting.
Ensuring that the mixing equipment can ideally stand the desired heating temperature(85°C) for whole process to get a good , satisfactory result.
Avoid adding sugar all at once while mixing water with pectin. For best results it is suggested to mix sugar and pectin first in which pectin shall be in 20% ratio of overall weight.
For proper gelation to occur , pH must be maintained while adding any such acidic substances like citric acid to the gummy mixture to avoid pre-gelation. It will be beneficial if such ingredients are added nearing the deposition step.
When using ingredients derived from seaweed, prolonged exposure to acidic environment must be avoided to prevent unstable gel formation. For High Ester Pectin it is necessary to maintain pH around 4 as it would breakdown in too acidic condition while Low Ester Pectin must be maintained at pH above 3 as it also degrades at lower pH values.
9.Are There Any Signs Or Symbols That Can Aware Users Of A Vegan and Non-Vegan gummy product?
Yes, there are symbols called “Kosher symbols” which are labeled on a gummy packaging that may aware the user of the basic formulating ingredient which is employed to make gummies. However vegetarians must not completely rely on these labeling.
Kosher symbols indicate that the whole manufacturing process of the gummy was inspected by a Hebrew dietary law regulator. It may or may not contain at least any one of the meat or dairy ingredients. “P” or “Parve” symbol may explain that it doesn’t contain meat or dairy items however it might contain fish or eggs. “Kosher D” explains that it might contain dairy ingredients or have used such processes which involved the use of dairy products.
Products that are formulated totally of plant based sources may be indicated with symbols that mention they’re 100% organic, made with cruelty free processes that doesn’t include in any of the manufacturing step the use of animals and gluten free, list of ingredients are clearly mentioned which tells the direct source of plant whether a vegetable or a fruit or anything else.
This is common practise that gelatin is used as main ingredient in gummy bears which tends to be non-preferable among vegans. Therefore, vegan gummies- The Animal Free Alternative which is considered as a halal or kosher source preferably used in its manufacturing. In above article we basically discussed important parameters of vegan gummies. If you have any questions or queries, we recommending to contact our experts now.
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