Why Tesco Oranges Aren't Vegan?
31 Aug 2022 by Agi Kaja

Vegetables and fruits are essential foods for those who follow a vegan diet. As both come from plants, we consider them vegan-friendly products by default. However, what seems evident in nature is not always so obvious when shopping in a traditional supermarket. 

Citrus fruits in supermarkets are not always vegan.

One of the largest supermarket chains in the UK came under fire last week when it was revealed their citrus fruits might not be vegan-friendly at all. After all, Tesco was forced to admit their oranges are not strictly vegan. 

What can be not vegan about an orange?

The company confirmed that during the production process, the citrus fruits, including oranges, lemons, limes and grapefruits, are treated with post-harvest beeswax, which is a non-vegan animal product. This process is supposed to help the retailers keep the fruits fresher for longer. Unfortunately, this practice is industry standard which means citrus fruits available in other retailers might not be 100% vegan either. 

What is beeswax glazing?

The beeswax commonly used on harvested fruits contains shellac (or E904), which is a glazing agent made from the secretion of female lac bugs. Therefore, vegan customers are not able to buy oranges. Instead, they should look for organic citrus fruits that are usually unwaxed and, therefore, suitable for vegans.

A spokesperson of Tesco says that they are working with fruit growers to develop a vegan-friendly wax that wouldn't contain shellac.

Shop at a vegan supermarket

What can you do in the meantime? Do your grocery shopping at a plant-based supermarket, like The Vegan Kind. We ensure no animals are harmed in the production process, and our fresh veggies are not covered in any nasty 'glazing'. With over 5.500 100% plant-based products, including frozen, you will find everything you need for cooking and snacking, from meat and milk alternatives to vegan chocolate and even ice cream! 

31 Aug 2022
Agi Kaja

About the author

Agi Kaja
Agi Kaja

News editor
Sustainability, plant-based food & lifestyle, climate & environment, business & new product launches.
Contact & press releases : agi.kaja@thevegankind.com

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