Kraft Mac and Cheese is a quick meal popular among college students and everyday folks who are looking to make a quick dinner.
Animal Enzymes used to make Kraft Mac and Cheese are from lamb and beef, there is no pork products in Kraft Mac and Cheese. However, the sources of their animal enzymes are not halal. There are alternatives to Kraft Mac and Cheese that do not contain animal enzymes to make the cheese.
In this brief article, we will answer the question, “Does kraft mac and cheese have pork in it?” and provide information on ingredients of kraft mac and cheese, types of rennet, tips to detect vegan cheese as well as vegan alternatives to cheese.
Does kraft mac and cheese have pork in it?
No, kraft mac and cheese has pork in it. Certain food products like kraft mac and cheese are prepared from rennet of animals. This rennet is taken from the stomach lining of animals like goats, sheep, and cows.
According to the statement from the company, the cheese powder in kraft mac and cheese is taken from animals (goats, calves, and sheep) and microbes too but it does not contain pork.
Mac and Cheese Ingredients
A pack of Kraft mac and cheese 7.25 oz box has the following ingredients:
Macaroni enriched with wheat flour, ferrous sulfate, durum flour, niacin, and vitamin B1 (thiamin), vitamin B2, Folic acid, and cheese sauce mix.
The cheese sauce mix would contain milk fat, whey, milk protein concentrate, salt, sodium triphosphate, lactic acid, citric acid, sodium phosphate, calcium phosphate, turmeric, less than 2 percent of tapioca flour, and annatto.
Annatto is added to provide color to the cheese. Other than the animal ingredients (animal enzymes) which were taken from beef and lamb, there were no other non-vegetarian ingredients observed.
It is also important to note that the other cheese products that are produced using microbial rennet instead of animal enzymes would be labeled on the cheese so that the vegans can get an idea of whether the cheese is vegetarian or non-vegetarian.
What are the types of rennet used?
Calf rennet is used to prepare less than 5 percent of cheese in the United States. As a result of animal rights regulations, calf rennet is not used as much to prepare cheese. About 95 percent of cheese is prepared using non-animal derived rennet in the United States nowadays.
Microbial rennet is produced by fungi and is less costly than the rennet derived from calves. Microbial rennets though do not have as much protein as the calf rennet does. This can produce smaller cheese yields.
Microbial rennets can also give a slightly bitter-tasting cheese. Microbial rennets though are capable of withstanding high heat and residual amylase activity.
This can cause issues to the food in which the microbial rennet has been added. Many microbial rennet manufacturers though claim that this issue is no longer seen.
Fermentation produced Chymosin (FPC)
This is the most common enzyme that is used for producing cheese. About 70 percent of cheese includes FPC as the main component, the rest 25 percent cheese is prepared using microbes and the 5 percent is prepared using calf rennet.
FPC is similar to calf rennet because of which it is widely used to produce cheese. FPC is produced using genetically modified organisms and also includes fermentation. FPC is costlier than microbial rennet but is less pricey than calf rennet.
As FPC is produced using fermentation, there is no shortage of FPC required to make cheese
This is another type of rennet that is used to produce cheese. Vegetable coagulants are prepared using plants like Cynara.
How to detect whether the cheese is vegan friendly?
Dairy products that contain whey do not have rennet. This would include cream cheese, paneer, and ricotta.
Look at theingredient list of the cheese. If the list contains microbial rennet or vegetarian rennet, you can use the cheese.
If the ingredient list contains enzymes, it is likely to be non-vegetarian. Avoid using this cheese. If the label present on the cheese packet though mentions non-animal enzymes, then it would be safe to consume that cheese.
If you like parmesan cheese, you can check out vegan-friendly alternatives to parmesan cheese that can include Bel gioioso, Applegate, Amy’s, Cabot, and Horizon.
You can also look for certified Kosher cheese if you want a vegan-friendly alternative.
If the ingredient list mentions vegetable rennet, then it is safe to consume again. Vegetable rennets are prepared from plants like melon, thistle, safflower, and fig leaves.
This rennet might not be that effective as animal rennet would be. As a result, it would be used in larger quantities to produce cheese.