What you will read in this article?
- Are Oreos Vegan in 2021?
- Oreos: Make it by yourself.
- Oreos and their relationship with veganism.
- Ingredients in Oreos.
- Historically, why Oreos were not vegan?
- Why Oreos should not be consumed even if they are vegan?
- Are Oreos exclusive “Golden Oreos” vegan?
- Vegan alternatives of Oreos.
- Final words: Should you eat Oreos?
Are Oreos Vegan in 2021?
Apparently, Oreos are Vegan in 2021. PETA officially recognizes Oreos as a vegan. However, some hardcore vegans might not consider it as a vegan because:
- Chances of amounts of dairy being present due to cross-contact. (The Company officially states the possibility of cross-contact.)
- Use of Palm Oil in the manufacturing of these cookies. Plantation of Palm trees causes deforestation, habitat loss for animals, land grabs, loss of livelihoods, and social conflict, and human rights are often violated on plantations.
- Use of Sugar. The processing of the sugar involves filters made of animal bones which makes them non-vegan.
make oreos yourself at home!
You can make Oreos at home by yourself or can buy this vegan-friendly choco-chip cookie as an alternative to Oreos.
Oreos and their relationship with veganism
When you’re thinking about evening snacks? What comes into your mind? Chips, cookies, etc. Likewise, Oreos are cookies with two chocolate wafers that have a flavor filling.
It’s one of the best-selling cookies in the US, according to Wikipedia. (“Oreo,” 2021). It’s one of the favorite cookies of people of all ages in the world.
Besides using them as cookies, people utilize them to make new desserts, including Oreo shakes that have become a mainstream shake in beverages’ menu.
Moreover, Oreos officially also showcases some unique recipes that people can make with Oreos. Some of them are Oreos surprise cake, Oreo cheesecake bites, etc. Below is the OREO brownie recipe.
Apart from their flagship chocolate flavor, Oreos has launched many more flavors, including hazelnut, peanut butter, mint flavor, etc. Therefore, they are, by far, one of the favorite snacks of people, but are they cruelty-free?
One such question that most people have in their mind is about their ingredients. Most commonly, people question that ‘are Oreos vegan’? It’s a very debatable query about Oreos, and we’ll analyze the whole query below.
Let us, deep dive.
What are the ingredients in Oreos?
According to the nutrition section on the packaging, the ingredients of Oreos are as follows:
- Unbleached enrich flour
- Canola oil
- High fructose corn syrup
- Corn starch
- Soy lecithin
- Unsweetened chocolate
All the above ingredients are cruelty-free, and they have no traces of dairy products.
Except for sugar!
Sugar in itself is vegan when it comes from the sugarcane plant but the question and controversy come up with the processing of sugar to produce like the white table sugar that we’re so used to today.
Now the way that sugar refineries turn the brown sugar cane into sugar is by pushing those crystals through a really fine filter that’s made from bone char which is basically burnt up animal bones
Historically Oreos were not Vegan at all!
Let’s go a bit into the history of Oreos.
Now, we see that Oreo’s ingredients are Vegan. However, they were not vegan in the past.
In the late ’90s, there were several health concerns regarding Oreos consumption. Their crème filling included an ingredient called lard. Lard is pig fat, and since it’s from animals, it was not vegan-friendly.
However, the company replaced the lard fat with hydrogenated vegetable oil. The health concerns didn’t stop. After a decade, there were more concerns, and the company had to replace the ingredient with non-hydrogenated vegetable oil.
Now, the cookies were partially vegan friendly because still, there was whey protein in the biscuits.
Whey protein is a dairy by-product, and it’s non-vegan. Fortunately, the company replaced whey protein from the cookies in 2014, and they were vegan friendly.
However, even after Oreo’s ingredients become vegan-friendly, the company still classify it as non-vegan. Why is that so? Let’s find out now.
Why is Oreo not vegan-friendly?
A single FAQ answer on Oreo’s website changes the fate of all-vegan individuals who love Oreos. They classify that Oreo may not be vegan-friendly because there are cross-contacts with milk that make them unsuitable for vegan.
Now, what do cross-contact means?
It simply means that Oreos’ manufacturing occurs in a factory where products containing milk and other dairy products are also manufactured. Therefore, there is a high possibility that Oreos may contain a shred of milk due to close contact. Due to this very minute difference, the company classifies it as non-vegan friendly.
Mondelez International is the manufacturer of Oreos in the UK. It warns the customer that there might be a possibility that Oreos may contain traces of milk, making them non-vegan friendly.
Moreover, the American division of Oreos also doesn’t recognize them as vegan friendly.
However, PETA, one of the biggest advocates for animal rights, classify Oreos as accidental-vegan products.
Vegan or not Vegan: Here is why you should not eat Oreos
Besides these claims of cross-contact, there are other issues with the cookies’ ingredients. It has some harmful and engineered ingredients that can have a drastic impact on a person’s health.
It contains fructose corn syrup and soy lecithin originally from plants, but they are extremely unhealthy.
Similarly, manufacturers use palm oil to make these cookies.
Palm oil is generally quite harmful to health. It is a cheap processed ingredient that also harms the environment. Therefore, palm oil raises ears about health concerns.
The World Health Organization (WHO) and the Food and Agriculture Organization (FAO) described the evidence linking saturated fat consumption with increased risk of cardiovascular disease as convincing. It also increases the risk of increased bad cholesterol – WHO
Many vegans try to avoid palm oil because it harms the environment and is unsustainable. Many vegans go as far as to say that certain plants are non-vegan friendly, like palm oil.
Are all Oreos flavors vegan-friendly?
Oreo develops many variants and flavors.
Since most of their manufacturing occurs in the same factory, they have a danger of cross-contact. So, they classify as an accidental vegan.
There is a minimal chance that they can be non-vegan, but still, the company is honest and transparent about its products. However, some Oreos products may contain dairy, including mint fudge-covered, white fudge-covered, thin bites fudge dipped.
Are Oreos exclusive “Golden Oreos” Vegan?
Golden Oreos is another product of Oreos, and it’s a very exclusive product. Many people tend to question that whether Golden Oreos is vegan?
Well, the answer is surprisingly no.
Golden Oreos are made in the same factories as the other flavors, and there is again a high possibility that there might be cross-contact with milk.
Vegan alternatives of Oreos
If you’re a strong advocate for animal rights and a vegan, you don’t have to worry about having a sweet treat.
There are many good options and alternatives to Oreos that’ll savor your taste buds. Below, we’ll list some of the alternatives.
- Gato Cookies and Creams: These cookies are one of the most delicious brands that come in several flavors. The bakers of this business use plant-based materials to make cookies.
- Newman O’s: It’s another popular brand that makes organic snacks. They also make chocolate sandwich cookies that taste similar to Oreo and are healthier.
So? Should you eat oreos?
I always say the same thing when it comes to the question “should we eat or not”.
“It just depends on you, no one is going to be judging you apart from yourself”
Just because these cookies might have been touching some dairy doesn’t mean you are not vegan.
For me, I am not concerned about the cross-contact thing but, What I am really concerned about is the use of Palm oil.
Palm oil is derived from a plant but still, it has another associated harmful impact on the environment and animal habitats.
So in one way or another, it’s hurting animals.
That’s why I will not eat it and that’s why you shouldn’t.
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