Are Now and Laters Vegan and Cruelty-Free?

September 28, 2023

Identifying whether or not Now and Laters are vegan can be a challenging task.

This difficulty often arises because processed foods often contain a host of unidentifiable and unpronounceable ingredients.

Fear not, dear reader, for this article aims to uncover the truth and support you in your commendable vegan lifestyle.

Are Now and Laters Vegan?

Based on the provided ingredients list, Now and Laters are not strictly vegan, though they may be acceptable to some vegans.

The source of this uncertainty is the sugar. Refined sugar is often processed with a substance called bone, the ground-up bones of animals. Now, the practice of processing sugar with bone char is on a downswing in favor of vegan filtering substances, such as activated charcoal.

However, it’s almost impossible to know which sugar has been filtered with bone char and which hasn’t. For that reason, strict vegans tend to steer clear of refined sugar.

Are Now and Laters Cruelty-Free?

Now and Laters are not cruelty-free. The use of palm oil, which is linked to deforestation and habitat destruction, directly harms wildlife, particularly endangered species like orangutans.

Furthermore, the corn syrup, sugar, soy lecithin, and citric acid in Now and Laters are GMO products. GMO stands for genetically modified organisms, and being genetically modified, these ingredients are tested on animals to ensure they are safe for human consumption.

Additionally, the artificial colors in Now and Laters are also tested on animals.

What Are Now and Laters Made Of?

Before diving into the vegan implications of each ingredient, let’s list down what Now and Laters are composed of:

  • Corn syrup
  • Sugar
  • Palm oil
  • Citric acid
  • Salt
  • Artificial flavor
  • Soy lecithin
  • Artificial colors: Red 40, Yellow 5, Blue 1, Blue 2

Corn syrup

Derived from corn starch, corn syrup is a sweetener. It’s plant based and therefore vegan, but is also GMO.


Sugar can be derived from various sources, including cane sugar and beet sugar. While it’s plant based, some sugar is processed using bone char, which is not vegan. The source and processing method for the sugar in Now and Laters is not specified. One way to ensure your sugar is vegan is to buy raw cane sugar, organic sugar, or unrefined sugar.

Palm oil

Extracted from the fruit of oil palms, palm oil is plant based. However, its production often leads to deforestation, threatening wildlife. Its ethical concerns make it a debated ingredient in the vegan community.

Citric acid

Citric acid is derived from citrus fruits and is used to give candies their extreme sour taste. It’s vegan but GMO.

Artificial flavor

Artificial flavors are chemically derived and can come from various sources. Without specific details, it’s hard to determine if they’re vegan, but they typically are. However, they’re also routinely tested on animals since they’re synthetic.

Soy lecithin

Soy lecithin is derived from soybeans, a very common GMO crop, and acts as an emulsifier. It’s vegan.

Red 40, Yellow 5, Blue 1, Blue 2

These are artificial colors. While they are synthetically derived and not from animal products, they are routinely tested on animals.

Vegan Alternatives to Now and Laters

For those with a sweet tooth looking for vegan candy options, there are plenty of alternative brands to Now and Laters. Here are some categories and specific products:


While Now and Laters contain no direct animal products, the potential use of sugar processed with bone char and the inclusion of palm oil, GMOs, and artificial ingredients make them not strictly vegan or cruelty-free.

For those committed to a vegan diet and lifestyle, there are numerous vegan alternatives available that satisfy the same chewy texture and taste buds’ delight.

Always remember to check the ingredients and make food choices that align with your values.