Are Smarties Vegan? Vegan Analysis For Colorful Candies

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There are so many questions floating across the web with regards to vegan food analysis. Thus, we bring you a complete vegan analysis of Smarties – the colorful candies here. So, are Smarties vegan? What do you say?

Before we start dissecting the ingredients present in these candies, let us tell you, there are two different Smarties marketed in the world.

AWW! Don’t Aww!

In the West we have the sugary rolls Smarties favored in America and the East markets Smarties that resemble M&Ms.

Smarties UK is colorful, sugar-coated chocolate spheres produced originally by H.I. Rowntree & Company in 1937, but currently manufactured by Nestlé. They come in various colors like red, orange, yellow, green, blue, pink, mauve, and brown. The flavor for all remains the same. Yummy chocolaty.

Then, we have the Smarties more popular amongst the Americans. The sweet candy rolls available in an assortment of different flavors, viz. cherry, pineapple, grape, strawberry, orange, and more.

However, the question remains the same – Are Smarties Vegan?

Well, the answer is it depends. One of the Smarties is vegan and other is not.

Let’s delve into the facts about both brands (same name of course) and check which one can fit a vegan diet.

Are Smarties by Nestlé Suitable For Vegans?

Nestlé Smarties Ingredients

  • Milk chocolate
  • Sugar
  • Wheat flour
  • Modified corn starch
  • Carnauba wax
  • Artificial colors

Looking at the ingredients it is obvious that these vibrant candies contain a dairy-based ingredient (milk chocolate), which makes them off the books for vegans.

In addition to the animal-based components in their products, Nestlé isn’t a 100% cruelty-free, pro-animal, and ethical company. They make huge profits using animal-derived products.

This may involve direct use of animal products and by-products or animal testing of various dyes and flavors. So, buying products from a company making animal-based products will stream a revenue that goes into the making of similar animal-based goods.

At least that is what most vegans believe.

There are a few vegans that also think this might not be entirely true. Times and demands might change leading to a shift in making vegan products by non-vegan companies. Companies like Mars and Skittles have incorporated changes in their ingredient to produce vegan candies and goodies.

Nestle smarties

Are Smarties Candy Rolls Vegan?

Smarties Candy Rolls Ingredients

  • Dextrose
  • Citric acid
  • Calcium stearate
  • Natural and artificial flavors
  • Artificial colors

These sugar bites are free from animal products and thus you can include then in your vegan candy list for Halloween.

The Smarties Candy Company proudly states,

All Smarties candy made by Smarties Candy Company is vegan! There is no need to worry about your dietary and ethical choices coming in conflict with satisfying a sweet tooth. Smarties candy is the perfect solution. Smarties ingredients contain no animal products, making them a tasty and cruelty-free choice for anyone looking for delicious vegan candy.”

They also confirm that calcium stearate in the ingredients comes from a plant source and no animal products are used in the procession of any of their products. Additionally, there are some questionable ingredients present in the formulation like natural and artificial flavors, as well as colors that are assumed to be plant-based unless otherwise specified.

Smarties Candy Company US
Image courtesy: Twitter

Let’s study these questionable vegan (or not-vegan) ingredients to know if we can still count them as plant-based.

Questionable Ingredients In Smarties

Artificial Colors And Flavors

There is no concern about artificial flavors and colors. They are artificially created in the lab to add taste and vibrancy to food products. These chemical entities can be an unhealthy affair though.

However, the reason why we are discussing these components in vegan candies is the series of tests they undergo to be certified as safe for consumption. 

Those tests are often performed on animals like mice, dogs, and cats. This might expose animals to pain and torture also.

These tests must be done so that we consume healthy food. We also need to realize that to guarantee the safety of these artificial elements, regular testing is a must. Alarmed! 

Therefore, these chemical entities are categorized as a questionable ingredient by vegans. 

Natural Flavors

As the name suggests, these flavors come from natural sources; plant-based or animal-based. Most natural flavors come from plant sources. There are a few instances where animal-based flavors are used in the food and cosmetic industries. 

Castoreum, for example, is a liquid extracted from anal secretions of beavers in Europe and America. This substance is used to enhance vanilla, strawberry, and raspberry flavors. If you’re concerned about such ingredients, we recommend you stay away from candies and chews.

Where Can You Buy Smarties?

Smarties are easily found in any drugstore or retailers like Walmart or Tesco. You can also pick them at your nearest dollar store (and grab some exclusive discounts). Visit the theater or candy shop in a park to find your favorite Smarties. Internationally you can just buy them online.

Vegan Treats For Sweet Tooth’s

There are plenty of snacks and sweets to suit the vegan diet. Here are a few treats you can enjoy on a vegan menu.

  • Airheads: These are tangy and taffy strips available in a variety of flavors like watermelon, cherry, strawberry, raspberry, and green apple. These awesome candies were introduced in 1986 and are commonly available in Spain and Mexico. Airheads are sold in the form of bars, lollipops, and mini bites.
  • Cracker Jack Original Caramel Coated Popcorn and Peanuts: If you’re the one who likes it sweet and salty, try Cracker Jack popcorns. The sticky-sweet taste of caramel-coated peanuts and popcorn balls. Yummylicious!
  • Skittles: Are these rainbow candies vegan? Not originally, but the brand has been vegan for a while.
  • Jolly Ranchers: You won’t be able to resist these hard fruit candies and chews. The Hershey Company owns the brand and they have introduced Jolly Ranchers in soft, chewy, sour, hard, gummy, sugar-free, and bite-size varieties of candies. However, only the original hard candy is vegan. Check the labels before you buy their products.
  • Swedish Fish: Yet another vegan treat for you, the Swedish fish as the name suggests are fish-shaped red chewy candies. They are widely sold in the US and Canada and available online internationally.
  • Surfs Sweets Candy: Surf Sweets is a confectionery company based in California. The brand is committed to clean food offering a variety of vegan candies to meet the current food demands. Plus, they are entirely soy and gluten-free range of sweets. You must try their Gummy worms, Sour Bears, and Reach Rings; their too good to resist. All these gummies don’t contain high fructose corn syrup, artificial colors, or flavors.

These are the very delicious and lip-smacking vegan candies (the list includes many more treats and snacks) you can indulge in without guilt.

Image courtesy: The Fact Site

We hope that we have answered the question – Are Smarties vegan? 

Nestle Smarties are not fit for vegan consumption while the Smarties candy rolls are vegan. This said you have to decide if you’re okay to consume the above listed questionable ingredients. If you follow typically high standards and ethics of veganism, then avoid them. 

Do remember candies are still considered junk irrespective of the brand and vegan status. They still harm your body, so limit them to cheat day status.

Frequently Asked Questions (FAQs)

Are Nestlé Smarties vegan?

Smarties are sold by two companies in different countries under the same brand name. The Smarties sold by Smarties Candy Company, USA are vegan, but those sold by Nestlé are not plant-based. This said both Smarties do contain controversial ingredients like natural and artificial flavors and colors.

Are Smarties UK vegan?

Smarties UK is manufactured by the Nestlé brand. These colorful candies contain milk chocolate and thus they are not vegan.

What are Smarties made of?

The ingredients in Smarties candy rolls (USA) are dextrose, citric acid, calcium stearate, natural and artificial flavors, and colors. Conversely, Smarties colorful candies (UK) contain milk chocolate, sugar, wheat flour, modified corn starch, carnauba wax, and artificial colors.

Do Smarties have gelatin?

Smarties are candies without gelatin, the gelling agent. The candies mainly contain cane sugar. Smarties UK does contain milk chocolate making it unfit for vegan.

Why are Nestlé smarties not sold in the US?

Nestlé Smarties are not generally distributed in the United States, except by some specialist importers. This is because the Americans copyrights to the same brand name, ‘Smarties’ belong to the Smarties Candy Company. They manufacture sugary hard tablet rolls under the registered trademark – Smarties (and not the chocolate candies like Nestlé).

Are Nestlé Smarties gluten-free?

No, these candies contain wheat flour in their ingredients and thus this treat is not gluten-free.

Is Nestlé Smarties halal?

Nestlé Smarties are not certified halal or kosher. However, none of their products contain animal products or by-products. The candy does include vanilla flavor which contains ethyl alcohol as a carrier, but it is removed during processing. The final product is free of alcohol too.

Are there vegan-friendly Smarties?

Yes, Smarties sold by Smarties Candy Company, USA are free from animal products and thus can be consumed by vegans.

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