Today there are countless brands and dozens of varieties of yogurt; light, whipped, Greek, drinkable, and even kid-friendly versions. While everyone is concerned with high fructose corn syrup, artificial coloring, and even GMO products, what else could there possibly be hidden inside these innocent looking yogurts?
Recently, I discovered Müller’s FrütUps and was surprised to see ‘fish’ listed as a potential allergy. Fish? In yogurt? So I contacted the company and inquired about this phenomenon. A representative responded quickly, to explain, that they add gelatin to create the fruit mousse in this particular product. Regular gelatin is made from bones and animal products, usually pork and sometimes beef, so they use a fish product to make it kosher friendly. This seemed to be an acceptable answer and it is properly labeled. They do offer many other varieties that are gelatin free.
It turns out that those with allergies or who are vegetarians should read labels more carefully. After reviewing other yogurts, I was genuinely amazed to find that many add kosher gelatin to the actual yogurt product to give it a better consistency. Largely all of the Greek yogurt products appear to be gelatin free, but it is found in most other varieties, among these are popular brands Yoplait, Dannon, and Activia.
Some may have assumed that ‘kosher gelatin’ means that it is animal free, but it is generally made from fish. In fact, I have learned, unless the product is labeled as ‘vegetarian friendly’ or specifically states that it is a plant based gelatin, it is safe to assume that the product contains fish products even if it is not labeled as such.