Due to many gummies containing animal-derived gelatin as a base ingredient, many who adhere to a vegan lifestyle may avoid purchasing products that contain it. Keeping this in mind, offering a plant-based alternative can appeal to this conspicuous consumer market.
Essentially, people who follow a vegan diet and/or lifestyle avoid purchasing items that contain animal byproducts. As more consumer product verticals develop products that cater to this passionate audience, there are immense opportunities for pharmaceutical manufacturers to do so as well.
In 2021, plant-based alternatives to popular consumer food categories numbered billions of dollars in sales. Many health-conscious meat-eaters also participate in purchasing these products as a healthier alternative, such as a red meat substitute or plant-based milk.
Whether you are a contract or in-house pharmaceutical manufacturer, there are a number of reasons why a vegan product offering can benefit your business. These include:
Vegan gummy vitamin manufacturing capabilities open up an entirely new avenue for advertising your products and services. Contract manufacturers can offer this new capability to their co-packing clients while in-house brands can advertise their plant-based gummy vitamins and supplements directly to their consumer base.
People seeking vegan vitamin options will be more likely to re-purchase your products. They will trust that your plant-based vitamins and supplements are consistently beneficial to their lifestyles and free of animal-derived ingredients.
Using vegan ingredients operates similarly to a standard gelatin-based gummy manufacturing process. The only major difference will be temperature settings during the initial cooking phase.
Agar agar comes from red algae and has long been used to replicate a gelatinous consistency for gummy products. Typically, agar agar-based gummies are a bit softer and easier to chew than ones made with gelatin.
Agar agar also does not alter the flavor of a gummy product and is completely water-soluble at high temperatures. It can be mixed with nearly any sweetener or flavoring agent and produce a remarkably tasty gummy product for consumers to enjoy.
Another reason that many vegan gummy manufacturers prefer agar agar to other types of plant-based alternatives is that it is proportionally interchangeable with gelatin. You can swap one for the other down to the gram, which can save immense time and stress by removing the need to reformulate your products.
Carrageenan is sourced from Irish moss and is also popularly used in many other vegan food products. However, it is a rather soft material and may be too soft for most gummy products that may require a firmer consistency.
Konjac is an herb that is indigenous to parts of Asia and is known for its high fiber content. However, it is important to point out that konjac is either restricted or banned in certain parts of the world, such as Europe. If you plan to sell your products to European countries, research their laws on the sale of konjac-based products before deciding on it as your vegan gummy alternative.
A powdery plant starch, pectin is a common gelatin substitute in the United States. It is often used in many powder supplements and can be easily translated into a gummy version of these products.
Another popular gelatin alternative in the American market, tapioca is sourced from cassava roots and can easily mimic the texture of gelatin-based gummies. It is slightly chewier than gelatin.
Vegan jel is not a single type of product. Instead, it can be various types of ingredients alone or mixed together to create a plant-based alternative to gelatin that faithfully mimics its properties. If you source vegan jel for gummies, be sure to check with the ingredient supplier about replacement ratios to ensure you can easily swap gelatin for your vegan jel of choice.
If you swap gelatin for a vegan alternative in your gummies, be sure to research the proper melting point for these ingredients. Many plant-based substitutes will have different melting points and may require you to adjust your temperature settings to create a successfully finished batch.
Other than temperature settings, there are a few other important factors to consider when formulating a vegan gummy vitamin.
First, the replacement ratio of grams of gelatin to grams of your vegan alternative of choice will be critical. Aside from agar agar, which can replace gelatin to the exact gram, others may require an adjustment of your ratios.
The second is ingredient compatibility. Make sure that your plant-based gummy’s ingredients are all compatible with one another and can be mixed together without compromising the stability of the formula.
Gummy Tech, a division of CapPlus Technologies, is dedicated to developing the highest-performing gummy manufacturing equipment on the market today. Whether you are seeking to produce traditional gelatin-based products or vegan gummies, our equipment can play an instrumental role in consistently high-quality batches of products for your business.
To learn more, contact us today to speak with one of our gummy experts.