Monday, January 16, 2017

The Vegan Side of Life

In all honesty, I generally have oatmeal for breakfast.

For one thing, it's a whole grain. Additionally, I can cook it in the crock pot while I sleep and wake up to find it ready to eat. And finally, I like the versatility! There are so many different things you can do with oatmeal.

Sometimes, I'll decide not to have oatmeal and just have cereal with a plant-based milk. But which ones are vegan?

Unfortunately, it isn't easy to find them. Honey is a popular sweetener that I want to avoid. Then there are the cereals with gelatin (Lucky Charms, for example, uses gelatin in their marshmallows), milk products (whey and non-fat dry milk are popular), and vitamin D3 which is often obtained from an animal source.

I'm in the process of compiling a list of vegan cereals from the major cereal manufacturers and today I'm concentrating on Quaker Products.

As far as I know, these are the only vegan Quaker cold cereal products:
  • Life Cereal
  • Cinnamon Life Cereal
  • Puffed Wheat
  • Puffed Rice
I've contacted the company to see if there are any more and will update this post when I get a response.

So!  This morning I had a bowl of Cinnamon Life with almond milk.  Tasty!  What do you generally have for breakfast?
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Update (1/18): I've received a response from Quaker, which I'll copy and paste here:

We're happy to help. We do not label our products specifically for vegan/vegetarian concerns, but we do label our products as Kosher when applicable. Some consumers who are concerned  with animal derived ingredients find Kosher labeling helpful in keeping to their dietary preferences.
Kosher Law is based on the Jewish book of the Torah, and precludes the use of meat and dairy products in the same meal. While a product may contain meat and also be Kosher, it must be labeled as containing meat products to prevent accidentally being mixed with dairy. Below is guide to some symbols you can watch for on our packages of Quaker products:

* The letter "U" enclosed in a circle on the front of a product is the symbol of the Orthodox Union of Jewish Congregations and indicates the product is Kosher. If it appears by itself, the product contains neither meat nor dairy as defined by Kosher Law.
* If a letter "M" or the word "Meat" is beside or underneath the circled U, it means that some part of the product contains or could have come into contact with meat as it is defined by Kosher Law.
* If a letter "D" or the word "Dairy" is beside or underneath the circled U, it means that some part of the product contains or could have come into contact with dairy as it is defined by Kosher Law.
For more information about Kosher labels, please visit:
Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations Kashruthhttp://www.oukosher.org/
So... this is some interesting information!  I never realized that the Kosher symbols could be so helpful.  While this won't help identify all ingredients that vegans want to avoid, it certainly helps identify meat and dairy in a product.  One can read the label to discern whether there are other ingredients that might be an issue (honey or vitamin D3, for example) so this is good to know!  I'll have to use this new knowledge next time I visit the grocery store!  Thanks, Quaker!

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Image by wsilver (That's life) [CC BY 2.0 (http://creativecommons.org/licenses/by/2.0)], via Wikimedia Commons

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