PEZ is available in more than 90 countries, and the available flavors differ from country to country. If you are migrating to a 100% plant-based diet and love PEZ candies, it’s rational to ask, is PEZ vegan?
Well, PEZ is undoubtedly suitable for vegans. This candy contains all-natural and plant-based ingredients. Plus, it is free from gluten, dairy, and animal products, making it a perfect addition to your vegan diet.
Here is a detailed guide about the vegan status of PEZ candies.
PEZ – A Brief History
The name PEZ comes from the German word “Pfefferminz,” meaning peppermint. PEZ candies are famous for a dispenser that contain candies as the actual candy itself. PEZ candies and dispensers may be a childhood staple, but they were created for a whole different audience.
In 1949, the first PEZ dispenser was introduced at the Vienna Trade Fair. This dispenser comes with the capacity of the same number of candies (twelve) as today. The original PEZ dispenser was known as “regular” and was similar to a cigarette lighter.
Instead of a childhood staple, the first PEZ dispenser held “adult breath mint” as an alternative to tobacco.
Even though PEZ is available all around the globe, they don’t have multiple or international factories to create and distribute juicy, fruity candy in dozens of countries. Instead, all PEZ candies are made in one single factory located in Orange, Connecticut.
While this approach looks like a logistical horror, it has several benefits. For instance, controlling a single factory is convenient for quality control. The company does have to send multiple tasters all around the globe to make sure the end product is up to snuff.
According to The New Haven Register, this single factory can produce more than 12 million PEZ in a single day. The PEZ factory utilizes more than fifty thousand pounds of sugar to satisfy the demand, which is crushed with three thousand pounds of pressure.
Is PEZ Vegan?
As mentioned earlier, PEZ candies are entirely vegan. These candies do not contain any dairy or animal products, making them a suitable treat for vegans and vegetarians out there.
Here are some of the most popular vegan-friendly PEZ flavors and their ingredients.
PEZ Candy Mystery Flavor
As the name suggests, this flavor is a mystery. It’s impossible to know the actual flavor until you consume the candy. PEZ candy mystery flavor is colorless but packed with flavors. It contains several flavors, including strawberry, raspberry, cherry, orange, and lemon.
Ingredients: natural flavoring, mono and di-glycerides, hydrogenated palm oil, palm kernel, adipic acid, corn syrup, and sugar.
PEZ Chocolate Candy
PEZ chocolate candies contain two flavors. Along with the original PEZ fruit flavors, they are rich in the chocolaty flavor of PEZ.
Ingredients: caramel color, artificial flavor, mono and di-glycerides, hydrogenated palm oil, hydrogenated palm kernel, corn syrup, and sugar.
PEZ Sour Candy
PEZ sour candy is one of the most popular PEZ flavors. Something about the smack and pucker that your mouth makes when your taste bud interacts with PEZ sour candy. This candy is available in different flavors, including sour pineapple, sour watermelon, sour blue raspberry, and sour green apple.
Ingredients: natural flavors, mono and di-glycerides, palm oil, palm kernel, hydrogenated cottonseed, tartaric acid, malic acid, citric acid, corn syrup, sugar, and artificial colors: FD&C Green 3, Red 40, Blue 1, and Yellow 5.
PEZ Cola Candy
PEZ Cola Candy is one of those things people can’t get enough of. The best part about this treat is that it tastes just like the real thing. With a unique PEZ dispenser and brown color, you can taste the cola flavor as soon as you open the lid.
Ingredients: caramel color, artificial flavors, mono and di-glycerides, hydrogenated palm oil, hydrogenated palm kernel, sodium bicarbonate, adipic acid, corn syrup, and sugar.
PEZ Cotton Candy
If you like cotton candy, you are surely going to love PEZ cotton candy flavor. This one offers soft texture and consistency and is loved by people of all ages. Other than cotton candy, this one is also available in Banana and Corn Candy flavors.
Ingredients: natural flavoring, mono and di-glycerides, hydrogenated palm oil, hydrogenated palm kernel, adipic acid, corn syrup, sugar, and artificial colors: FD&C Yellow 6, Yellow 5, Red 3.
PEZ Vanilla Cupcake
PEZ vanilla cupcake is perfect for PEZ fans, parties, trick-or-treat, grab bags, and pinatas. It is entirely vegan and free from fat, gluten, tree nut, and peanut.
Ingredients: natural flavoring, mono and di-glycerides, hydrogenated palm oil and hydrogenated palm kernel, adipic acid, corn syrup, and sugar.
PEZ Fruit Candy
PEZ fruit candies are like a dream come true. These candies are available in fruity flavors, including lemon, orange, raspberry, grape, strawberry, and cherry. They offer perfect texture and consistency and are loved by people of all ages.
Ingredients: natural flavors, mono and di-glycerides, hydrogenated palm oil, hydrogenated palm kernel, adipic acid, corn syrup, sugar, and artificial colors: FD&C Blue 2, Yellow 6, Yellow 5, And Red 3.
Allergen Information of PEZ
All PEZ candies are gluten, soy, tree nut, and peanut-free. If you are worried about mono and di-glycerides, PEZ ensures that these substances are entirely vegan and there is no cross-contamination.
In addition, PEZ candies are free from allergens known as codex. Codex allergens include:
- Flaxseed, celery, mustard
- Sesame seeds, poppy seeds, tree nuts
- Milk and dairy products
- Soybeans, peanuts, peas, legumes
- Fish and fish products
- Egg and egg products
- Shellfish and crustaceans
- Triticale, wheat, oats, barley
Is PEZ Healthy?
Unfortunately, there are not many options for vegans when it comes to delicious treats. Compared to other vegan candies, PEZ is relatively healthy. It does not have harmful side effects and is entirely free from gluten, nuts, dairy, and animal products.
One roll of PEZ candies weighs about nine grams and contains only 35 calories. Plus, this candy is free from sodium and unsaturated fat and is low in carbohydrates.
However, PEZ candies do contain a significant amount of sugar that can cause several health complications. A high dose of sugar can cause weight gain, inflammation, higher blood pressure, diabetes, and fatty liver diseases.
Therefore, we recommend you enjoy your PEZ candies to a limit and don’t make them a regular extension to your vegan diet.
Pez and Cigarettes
One of the most significant benefits of PEZ is that it is a perfect alternative to cigarettes. As mentioned earlier, PEZ has initially been an adult mint rather than a childhood staple. At first, these candies were tried to get Austrians to quit smoking. The results were quite promising in Austria.
However, when the company started this campaign in the early 1950s, it didn’t have the same effect in America. As a result, the company started producing different flavors of PEZ that got popular as a children’s staple, and the rest is history.
PEZ Dispensers and Their Popularity
PEZ dispensers are considered collectibles and can sell for large amounts. The highest verifiable sale of Micky Mouse PEZ dispenser was a private sale at $7,000 between a US collector and an Austrian Dealer. This container was never on the market and was created by the company as a prototype.
Due to the popularity and high value of the PEZ dispenser, there are several fake items available in the market. For instance, in the 2006 eBay sale, a Space Gun PEZ dispenser was sold for more than $11,000. However, after some chemical testing, the dispenser was proven to be a well-made fake.
The most valuable PEZ dispensers are 3 “Political Donkeys.” Each of these PEZ dispensers values at more than $13,000. The popularity of these dispensers can be recognized that one of the Political Donkeys PEZ dispensers was owned by John F. Kennedy.
Pez That Tasted Like Plants
Yes, you have read right. Once there was a PEZ flavor that tasted like plants. Nowadays, PEZ has numerous fruity flavors, including Lemon, Mango, Cherry, Raspberry, Strawberry, Orange, and more. However, PEZ also offered several unique and weird flavors in the past, such as coffee, licorice, and plants.
In 1960, PEZ offered a chlorophyll-flavored treat that tasted like a plant. These candies are still available on eBay for just $145. However, as these cadies are decades old, consume them at your own risk.
For vegans, PEZ is one of the best candies available in the market. These candies contain plant-based or synthetic ingredients. Plus, there are no dairy and animal products used in PEZ, making it a perfect addition to your vegan diet.
While reading ingredients, you don’t have to worry about mono and di-glycerides. Because according to PEZ’s official website, they are derived from vegetables and are not tested on animals. In addition, if you are following a gluten-free diet or have codex allergens, you can still enjoy PEZ candies.