FEBRUARY 28, 2022
Why should consumers look for certified plant-based products?
By DANNY CURRY
There is a surge in demand for plant-based products in the markets. Then, there are new companies that have sprung up to cater to this demand. As a consumer, you are not wrong in being worried about the authenticity of such market claims.
It is here that validations like Global Plant Based certification help reassure the consumers of the purity of plant-based foods. Consumers can verify the marketing claims against valid certifications.
This article takes you through the nitty-gritty of plant-based foods and certifications to be aware.
Let us begin!
Knowing the difference between plant-based and vegan diets
- A plant-based diet is primarily made up of plant-derived foods. It includes fruits, vegetables, nuts, legumes, and grains. Animal products are not eliminated but minimally used.
- A vegan diet is similar but eliminates animal products in totality. Not just confined to diet, it is a lifestyle choice rooted in a specific set of ethos.
Therefore, a plant-based diet caters to a wider basket of foods. Can you use ingredient lists to identify plant-based foods accurately?
The challenges of identifying plant-based foods
- Consumers find it difficult to understand the ingredient lists. For example, some commonly used ingredients like gelatin, carmine, and casein are derived from animal sources.
- Companies often state that their products are ‘non-dairy’ or ‘plant-based’ without actually being free from animal-derived ingredients.
- Some ingredients are conveniently dropped out of the list as they fall below the mandated threshold of usage.
- There are animal by-product ingredients with names that can hide their actual origin.
These difficulties can be addressed through reliable certification of foods.
How can certification benefit the consumer?
- A certification from a reputed agency is not easy to obtain and food companies need to adhere to various compliances to achieve it.
- The agency conducts a thorough examination of all the listed and unlisted ingredients to check for animal products.
- On-site inspection of facilities ensures that the manufacturing processes are compliant with purity standards.
- The certification is of several categories like Halal, Kosher, and gluten-free which indicate adherence to different dietary specifications.
This ensures greater transparency in marketing methods and allows the user to choose wisely.
Some health benefits of plant-based diets
- Reduced risk of cardiac diseases
- Reduced cancer risk
- Reduced risk of Blood pressure
- Longer lifespan
As a consumer, you have a right to be aware of the authenticity of the products you consume. A certified plant-based diet can help you make the right dietary choices hassle-free.