Rowntree's has announced that Fruit Pastilles will be made vegan-friendly, having trialled 30 recipes before locking down a winning taste.
Fruit Pastilles have been one of the UK's most popular confectionery products for almost 140 years, having been invented by brothers Henry and Joseph Rowntree, who worked with French confectioner August Claude Gaget at their cocoa works in York in 1881.
According to Rowntree's, they're enjoyed by 15 million people every year, with Nestlé's factory in Fawdon, near Newcastle-upon-Tyne, producing up to 150 tonnes of the sweets a week.
The sweets - which come in blackcurrant, lemon, strawberry, lime and orange flavour - already contain no artificial colours, flavours or preservatives, but now they're getting a fresh new makeover to also make them suitable for vegans.
The new recipe will be used across the full range of Fruit Pastilles sweets, starting with the sharing bags from October before being rolled out.
Nestlé technicians trialled over 30 recipes before arriving at the new formulation, aiming to remove the gelatine while ensuring the sweets retained the fruity flavour and iconic chew that they're famous for.
The gelatine-free Fruit Pastilles will join Nestlé's expanding range of vegan products, which includes Jelly Tots, Carnation vegan condensed milk and Nescafé Gold dairy alternative lattes.
Meg Miller, Brand Manager for Rowntree's, said: "We've had many requests from consumers over the years asking if we can make Fruit Pastilles vegetarian or vegan. We want the brand to be enjoyed by as many consumers as possible and so we are delighted to be able to introduce our new vegan friendly recipe across the full range of sweets.
"In developing the new formulation, we were very conscious of our responsibility as custodians of this much-loved brand and its long history.
"Through this recipe change, we've made the sweets slightly softer, which we know has been a market trend for a number of years. However, our priority was to preserve the fabulously fruity chew that has made Fruit Pastilles a classic for almost a century and a half.
"The product development specialists at our factory in Fawdon have spent a huge amount of time and care perfecting the new formulation. We hope all Fruit Pastilles fans will agree that we have succeeded in developing a recipe which is as deliciously chewy as it has ever been, whilst at the same time being suitable for those following vegetarian, vegan and religious diets."
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