A Nice biscuit is a thin, rectangular-shaped biscuit covered in small sugar particles and usually with the word “NICE” imprinted on top in capital letters. It can be plain or coconut-flavored, and it’s often served as an accompaniment to hot drinks, such as hot chocolate or tea.
The origin of this biscuit is vague but many companies attempt to take credit for it, though according to advertisements made in the past, they’re named after the city of Nice in France. A British company called Huntley & Palmers created the original Nice biscuits, but they are no longer around.
Now you have other brands (including supermarket brands) with their own version of Nice Biscuits. Arnott’s, an Australian brand, claims to produce the authentic Nice biscuit, which is suitable for vegans, but other brands, particularly from supermarkets like Tesco and Sainsbury’s, also produce Nice biscuits.
So, Are Nice Biscuits Vegan?
The answer is yes and no because depending on the brand you choose, you’ll find that the recipe varies.
For instance, the Nice biscuits from Arnott’s do not contain any animal ingredients, but the Nice biscuits from Tesco contain dried whole milk, making them unsuitable for vegans.
Besides these two brands, there are others like Sainsbury’s, Waitrose, ASDA, Dukes, Fox’s, Crawford’s, Co-op, Morrissons, and other supermarket-related brands.
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Which Nice Biscuits Are Vegan?
As I’ve mentioned, Arnott’s Nice biscuits don’t have animal ingredients, but Arnott’s is an Australian brand and is barely available in the United States and Europe.
The table below shows you which other Nice biscuit’s brands are vegan:
|Nice Biscuits Brand:||Is it Vegan?|
|Tesco Nice Biscuits||Contains Milk (not vegan)|
|ASDA Nice Biscuits||Vegan|
|Sainsbury’s Nice Biscuits||Vegan|
|Waitrose’s Nice Biscuits||Vegan|
|Dukes Nice Biscuits||Contains Milk (not vegan)|
|Fox’s Nice Biscuits||Contains Milk (not vegan)|
|Crawford’s Nice Biscuits||Vegan|
|Co-op’s Nice Biscuits||Vegan|
|Morrisson’s Nice Biscuits||Contains Milk (not vegan)|
As you can see, not every brand is vegan, and vice versa.
Therefore, it’s important that you always check the ingredient labels to verify whether the products contain animal ingredients – particularly because not every brand is the same, and recipes might also change with time.
Also, the brands I’ve classified as being vegan contain palm oil, an ingredient that some vegans are reluctant to call vegan because of the environmental and animal harm involved in its production.
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Why Palm Oil is Controversial
Palm oil is controversial for several reasons:
- It’s one of the major drivers of deforestation, which means we have the loss of critical habitat, namely of endangered species like orangutangs, pigmy elephants, and Sumatran rhinos.
- When you convert peat swamp forests into palm oil plantations, you get more greenhouse gas emissions.
- There is also some labor exploitation of both workers and child workers.
For these reasons, particularly the first, some vegans condemn the consumption of palm oil and avoid eating any products that might have it on their label.
Sustainable palm oil by the Roundtable of Sustainable Palm Oil (RSPO) is often pointed out as a better alternative, but organizations like Greenpeace beg to disagree. They claim that RSPO members are destroying forests, and are, in fact, linked to the forest fire crisis in Indonesia in 2015.
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Are Other Vegetable Oils Better?
Palm oil is actually the most efficient crop because it can produce more oil per land area than any other equivalent vegetable oil crop.
Palm oil supplies 35% of the world’s vegetable oil demand on 10% of the land.
To get the same amount with alternative oils such as soybean or coconut oil, you would need between 4 and 10 times more land, so the negative impact on animal habitat would be even greater.
Palm oil is also an important crop for the GDP of emerging economies, and there are many farmers who depend on it to survive, even though there is, in fact, an issue with how badly workers get paid.
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Some Nice biscuits are vegan, while others contain animal ingredients – typically dairy.
However, Nice biscuits contain palm oil, which is a controversial ingredient within the vegan community because of the consequential bulldozing of rainforests that are critical habitats to many animals, including endangered species.
Tied to that, there’s also the increase in greenhouse gases from converting peat swamp forests into palm oil plantations, making it an unsustainable business.
While it’s true that some Nice biscuits don’t have ingredients from animal origin, we also need to consider the impact of other ingredients, regardless of the origin.