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Smart Balance makes many buttery spreads that are free of dairy, but this does not mean that they are vegan.
Conagra Brands makes Smart Balance and they have stated that any of their products that are vegan will have a vegan label on them. As no Smart Balance products have a vegan label, it is clear that they are not vegan.
Keep reading for a breakdown of the non-vegan ingredients in Smart Balance and for some vegan butter alternatives!
Non-Vegan Ingredients in Smart Balance
There are several ingredients in Smart Balance non-dairy products that may or may not be vegan.
Upon reaching out to Smart Balance for answers, they were unable to confirm whether or not certain ingredients in their products are free of animal products.
Below are the ingredients of concern for vegans.
Vitamin D3 – This is found in all but two Smart Balance Buttery Spreads: Smart Balance Organic and Smart Balance Light With Flaxseed Oil.
Smart Balance has confirmed that the Vitamin D3 in their products is from lanolin, which comes from sheep. This means that the Vitamin D3 in Smart Balance products is NOT vegan.
Even though two Smart Balance products do not contain Vitamin D3, there are other potentially non-vegan ingredients in them, as explained below.
Monoglycerides – Monoglycerides can be vegan or non-vegan, however Smart Balance has confirmed that their monoglycerides are plant-derived.
Natural flavors – Natural flavor can be sourced from animals or plants. Smart Balance does not reveal if their natural flavors are plant-based or not.
Vitamin A Palmitate – This can be either vegan or non-vegan and Smart Balance would not reveal this when I asked.
Lactic Acid – Lactic acid can be vegan or non-vegan. Smart Balance did not reveal the source of their lactic acid upon questioning, so it may be sourced from animal byproducts.
Fish oil – This is found in Smart Balance Omega 3, and fish oil is definitely not vegan.
Are Any Smart Balance Buttery Spreads Vegan?
As noted above, two Smart Balance Buttery Spreads products do not contain Vitamin D3, which makes them appear vegan to some. However upon further investigation of the ingredients, there are some other ingredients that may be non-vegan.
Ingredients of concern in Smart Balance Organic: Natural flavor and lactic acid.
Ingredients of concern in Smart Balance Light With Flaxseed Oil: Natural flavor, lactic acid, vitamin A palmitate.
There is also no Vitamin D in the Smart Balance Buttery Sticks, but they have the following ingredients of concern for vegans: Lactic acid, natural flavor, and vitamin A palmitate.
Because of the uncertainty of some ingredients and the company’s lack of disclosure of the sources of these ingredients, vegans may want to avoid all Smart Balance products.
Considering there are so many butter alternatives that are confirmed to be vegan, it is easy for vegans to avoid Smart Balance.
Vegan Butter Alternatives
Although Smart Balance products are not vegan, there are many vegan butter alternatives available!
Earth Balance – Earth Balance makes many spreads and sticks that are all vegan.
Miyoko’s – All Miyoko’s products are vegan, and they make a variety of butter spreads.
Pure Blends – Pure Blends makes two vegan butters that are both certified by Vegan Action.
Melt Organic – Melt Organic makes vegan butter spreads and sticks.
LeGrand – LeGrand currently makes two vegan butter alternatives.
Wildbrine – Wildbrine currently makes two vegan butter alternatives.