Gummy Bears Isolated on White Background
The Ingredient That Makes Gummy Candy Shiny Is Also Found In Car Wax
By Nico Danilovich
Gummy candies mostly consist of colorants, flavorings, gelatin, sweeteners, and water, as well as ingredients mainly included for sheen. Some recipes use beeswax, concentrates, or glazes to add sheen, but there's one other common ingredient that, surprisingly, is also often found in car wax.
Carnauba wax, also used as car polish, is regularly added to gummy candies during the filling stage of production when the ingredients are poured into tray molds. This material naturally comes from the carnauba palm tree's fronds, and it's also used in cosmetics, leathers, furniture, medicinal pills, oil thickeners, printing inks, and shoe polish.
Carnauba wax became the center of a scandal in 2017 when gummy company Haribo was accused in a documentary of using enslaved people in its sourcing of carnauba wax. Allegedly, on the plantations providing wax to Haribo, workers were paid just $12 for a whole day's work and were provided with little to no shelter or clean water.