Rowntree’s is a British confectionary that developed some of the most popular candies/chocolates in the world, including Kit Kat, Aero, Smarties, and After Eight.
Throughout the 19th and 20th centuries, it was among the three biggest confectionery manufacturers in the United Kindom, alongside Cadbury and Fry, and by 1981 it was already considered the fourth-largest confectionery in the world.
Eventually, Rowntree’s was bought by Nestlé, and today it continues to market products such as Fruit Pastilles, Fruit Gums, and Jelly Tots, which are the ones vegans are interested in when inquiring about their products.
So, which Rowntree’s products are vegan? Rowntree’s original product range is not vegan because they contain gelatin. However, they have recently introduced a new range of Fruit Pastilles and Jelly Tots that don’t contain any animal ingredients.
With that being said, there are many products Rowntree’s have in their line, so it’s important to separate non-vegan products from vegan products. In this article, we’re going to do that and more.
Rowntree’s: Which Sweets are Vegan?
Rowntree’s, as a confectionery manufacturer, has a wide range of sweets in their ‘portfolio’, which include: Fruit Pastilles, Jelly Tots, Pick and Mix, Randoms, and Fruit Gums.
Here is a table to show you which of those products are vegan, and which ones are not:
|Product:||Is it Vegan?||Animal Ingredients:|
|Original Fruit Pastilles||No||Gelatin|
|Vegan Fruit Pastilles (New Recipe)||Yes||None|
|Vegan Fruit Pastilles – Strawberry & Blackcurrant – (New Recipe)||Yes||None|
|Original Jelly Tots||No||Gelatin|
|Vegan Jelly Tots (New Recipe)||Yes||None|
|Pick & Mix||No||Gelatin|
They have three vegan products that were confectioned based on original recipes, namely the original Fruit Pastilles, and the original Jelly Tots, and a new recipe of Fruit Pastilles with strawberry and blackcurrant flavors.
According to Rowntree’s brand manager, there were plenty of requests over the years for vegan products:
“We have had many requests from consumers over the years asking if we can make Fruit Pastilles vegetarian or vegan. We want the brand to be enjoyed by as many consumers as possible and so we are delighted to be able to introduce our new vegan-friendly recipe across the full range of sweets.
“In developing the new formulation, we were very conscious of our responsibility as custodians of this much-loved brand and its long history. Through this recipe change, we’ve made the sweets slightly softer, which we know has been a market trend for several years. However, our priority was to preserve the fabulously fruity chew that has made Fruit Pastilles a classic for almost a century and a half.”
Even though the three products Rowntree’s has launched are vegan, there are still some vegans who aren’t too receptive to the idea of consuming products from a company like Nestlé which has an unethical footprint.
Should we buy from companies like Nestlé?
We are often faced with ethical complications when it comes to buying products from giant companies, such as Nestlé, which profit largely from products of animal origin.
On one hand, It still feels like we are contributing to animal suffering.
On the other hand, when we buy their vegan products, we can compel them to launch more vegan products, which is quite impactful in the grand scheme of things.
In other words, the company will begin to invest its profits into creating more vegan products, which may entice non-vegan consumers to eat vegan products, reducing animal suffering on a broader scale.
Here is a neat video of Gary Yourofsky (a popular vegan activist) speaking on this issue:
He believes that you should consume vegan products from non-vegan companies for the reasons we have mentioned above.
Summary: Rowntree’s Has Three Vegan Products
Most of Rowntree’s products are not vegan because they’re confectioned using gelatin, an ingredient that is obtained by boiling skin, tendons, ligaments, and/or bones with water.
However, they have launched new versions of Fruit Pastilles and Jelly Tots without gelatin, making them suitable for vegans.
Are Rowntree’s Fruit Pastilles Gluten-Free?
According to Nestlé, Rowntree’s Fruit Pastilles are safe for a gluten-free diet, however, some consumers have claimed to have gotten ill from a gluten reaction.
Here is a particular comment from one consumer:
“No, they are not gluten-free. I’ve tried these and gotten ill with a gluten reaction. Rowntree lists them as containing gluten but below codex level, which means the start and/or the glucose syrup are from a wheat source. Based on the reaction I had, I do not believe they even meet the codex requirement.”
Given the experience from this consumer, I’d say that Rowntree’s Fruit Pastilles are not gluten-free.
Are Rowntree’s Fruit Pastilles Halal?
The original Rowntree’s Fruit Pastilles are not halal because they contain gelatin, which is typically not considered halal. However, there are also vegan Fruit Pastilles, which should also be halal, given that they have no gelatin.