Fruity Pebbles are a popular breakfast cereal enjoyed by kids and adults alike, but are they a vegan-friendly cereal option?
In this article, we are going to be looking at the ingredients to be found in Fruity Pebbles to see if it can be considered suitable for vegans. Let’s get started.
What Are Fruity Pebbles?
Fruity Pebbles are a sweet and colorful crispy rice cereal that is linked to the popular cartoon The Flintstones as they feature the iconic protagonist- Fred Flintsone- on the cereal box.
They are a spin-off of the original cereal known as Pebbles, which was released in 1969, with Fruity Pebbles coming to the fore in 1970.
Whilst the original version of Fruity Pebbles was made up of rice cereal pieces in flavors such as lemon, cherry, and orange, they now have a wide range of different flavors included such as berry, lime, and grape.
Some different variations on the classic Fruity Pebbles cereal include Magic Fruity Pebbles, Cocoa Pebbles, and Marshmallow Fruity Pebbles.
Are Fruity Pebbles Vegan?
Fruity Pebbles are not vegan-friendly. This is because the cereal features various non-vegan ingredients along with some somewhat questionable vegan ingredients.
The cereal is also non-cruelty-free due to the color testing process that goes into making it.
Non-Vegan Ingredients In Fruity Pebbles
So that you know exactly where the non-vegan elements of Fruity Pebbles come from, let’s take a closer look at the non-vegan ingredients to be found in the cereal.
This aspect of the cereal is incredibly anti-vegan due to the animal testing that is conducted to create said colorings.
Fruity Pebbles have a lot of artificial colors in them, such as Blue 2, Blue 1, Yellow 6, Yellow 5, and Red 40.
These colors are tested on animals, but some also contain ingredients that are animal derived, qualifying them as strictly non-vegan.
Palm Kernel Oil
Palm oil doesn’t directly involve any non-vegan ingredients, but much like the artificial colors, it is the process in which the oil is produced that makes them a non-vegan product.
There is a great deal of controversy surrounding palm oil due to the production process being associated with deforestation and the devastation of certain animal populations such as tigers and orangutans.
Due to the regular slaughter of these animals in order to clear land to produce this oil, it is not an ingredient considered suitable for vegans.
It might be surprising to know that the vitamin D that is used in cereals is not vegan-friendly, such as that used in Fruity Pebbles as well as cereals like Cinnamon Toast Crunch, Rice Krispies, and Lucky Charms.
This is due to this vitamin D being derived from lanolin which is extracted from sheep’s wool, therefore making these cereals non-vegan.
There is something of a gray area when it comes to natural flavors included in Fruity Pebbles, as it refers to an umbrella-like term that can include non-vegan ingredients.
However, the term natural flavors can- according to the FDA- also refer to flavors that are fruit, vegetable or plant based such as spices, herbs, barks, leaves etc.
That being said, they can also come from seafood, meat, poultry, fermentation products, dairy and a range of other animal products.
Because of this, vegans tend to avoid products that feature natural flavors due to this uncertainty unless it is clearly stated on the packaging that the product is completely vegan friendly.
Sugar is an ingredient that vegans tend to be wary of, as certain sugars- particularly refined, white sugars- include the use of bone char to process it.
This is the case for white sugars, as bone char is what creates the milky white coloring.
Fruity Pebbles might be a delicious breakfast cereal that brings back childhood memories, but it is certainly not a vegan choice of cereal.
If you are looking to switch to vegan friendly cereals, some great alternatives to Fruity Pebbles include Cheerios, Frosted Flakes, Fruit ‘n Fiber, Cap’ N Crunch and even Reese’s Puffs!
Some of these cereals do have certain products in their lines that have non-vegan elements, though, so make sure to do your research before you buy them, and you should be enjoying vegan friendly cereal in no time.