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May 16, 2012

Peppersmith Makes Chewing Gum Without Plastic

 

Most chewing gum is made from plastic.  Don’t believe me?  Read the details in my 2010 post “Chewing on Plastic? Yum.”  Even “natural” chewing gums like Glee, which is made with natural chicle, also contain plastic.  And the few brands that seem not to contain plastic often come packaged in a plastic bottle or plastic blister pack.  Thankfully, I’m not much of a gum chewer.  But I know plenty of people who are (including the love of my life), so I was super excited to learn about Peppersmith plastic-free natural chewing gum via MyPlasticFreeLife.com reader Dora who was equally excited to tell me about it.

Peppersmith Gum and Mints

Peppersmith makes both chewing gum and breath mints that come in a cardboard box without any plastic packaging.  In fact, Dan Shrimpton from Peppersmith wrote to me that the packaging is made from 100% Forest Stewardship Certified cardboard and is 100% recyclable.

 

 

The chewing gum ingredients are all natural and do not contain plastic or other synthetic chemicals:  Xylitol (a natural sweetener from beech trees), chicle gum base (sap from the Sapodilla tree), calcium carbonate (mineral extracted from limestone rock to make the gum softer), gum arabic (from the acacia tree), lemon oil, peppermint oil, rapeseed lecithin (from GMO-free European rapeseed instead of soy), carnauba wax (from the leaves of the Brazilian Wax Palm), vegetable glycerol.  All ingredients are suitable for vegans.

And even though Peppersmith gum is made from all natural ingredients, the company is still concerned about preventing chewing gum litter.  So they even include some little papers with each box for wrapping up chewed gum for proper disposal.  Each little paper has an interesting fact or cute saying.

 

 

Sounds Awesome!  Where Can I Get It?

Not so fast.  There is one catch:  Right now, the only stores that carry it are in the United Kingdom.  So for my U.K. readers, hurray for you guys!  For those of us on the other side of the pond, our only option is to order online from Peppersmith and pay for International shipping.  That’s a pretty heavy footprint for a pack of gum, no?  Do we have any North American entrepreneurs interested in distributing Peppersmith products in the U.S.?  Why not contact the company!

Compared to other brands

While I don’t chew much gum, I’d love to see Peppersmith alongside the other “natural” brands at my local Whole Foods.  Other chewing gum brands touted as natural are:

Glee Gum — which comes in a cardboard box but does contain plastic in the gum itself.

Spry Gum — which comes in a plastic bottle or a plastic blister pack.

Xylichew — which comes in a plastic bottle or a plastic blister pack.

Peelu — which contains synthetic chemicals.  According to account specialist Phillip Ellingson, the gum base “is very similar to any gum base you would find in any gum.  There are plasticizers and elasticizers, which give the gum the chewy consistency, but you do not swallow those ingredients.  The gum base specifically for our gums is not all natural, but the ingredients you ingest are. The Peelu dental gum is latex and petroleum free.”  [05/21/2012 Update: In a follow up email, Phillip confirms that the gum base does contain polyvinyl acetate.]

Chicza — is another natural gum which could be promising, however I have not seen it sold in stores in the U.S., and the website says it is only sold in the U.K.  I have reached out to the company for more information and will be sure and report back whatever I discover.  (Also, I’ll update this post if I hear back from them soon.)

Are there any brands I am missing here?

Want to Try Peppersmith Gum?

If you are a regular gum chewer in the United States, let me know and I’ll send you a box.  I have three unopened packages to give away.   If you are NOT a regular gum chewer, why not forward this post to someone who is?  Help them get the plastic out of their mouths.



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49 comments
Christian
Christian

I know they are pretty big in Holland as well. Go to Manufactum in Germany, they sell Peppersmith.

Catherine
Catherine

I am a regular gum chewer. Ive been researching chemical free gum. I came upon your post while searching for Peppersmith available in the US. I would love a pack of this gum, but what I would like more, is to know if you have located any local distributers. (i really do like to chew, so id love to by a bunch - and avoid international shipping...) 

paulaboub
paulaboub

I am a regular gum chewer and would love to try this.Paula Boubary paulaboub@msn.com 


ChynaDarner
ChynaDarner

I trying to reduce plastic all around, but more concerned about the plastic in my mouth. Do the bases of Spry and Xylichew contain plastic? or is it just the wrapping. I am highly addicted to gum and need something!

Nothing But The Tooth
Nothing But The Tooth

I'm not a gum chewer, but I'm actually rather tempted to at least try these :)  Shall have look in the shops tomorrow, see if i can find them in my local stores.

Jane Velasquez
Jane Velasquez

B-Fresh is another xylitol sweetened brand that doesn't contain aspartame or titanium dioxide, but it comes in a plastic blister pack inside a cardboard outer sleeve. I've been a regular gum chewer ever since a friend suggested it for acid reflux. It works really well. I started doing a little gum research today and stumbled upon Peppersmith gum and your page. I wish I could find a source here in California. I'd love to try some, though your free boxes are likely gone by now, so I'll check in occasionally to see any updates on Peppersmith. Thanks

DBMOM
DBMOM

My son has autism and his OT suggested chewing gum to keep him from putting other things in his mouth. I agreed it was a good idea in theory but didn't really want him putting brand name gum in his mouth either.  This seems the perfect solution.  If you still have a giveaway pack I'd love to have one.  Any update on getting some in the U.S.?  Thanks

AfricaInside
AfricaInside

thank you sooo much for this info. If you have any give away packs left, I am a gum chewer. I know a lot about plastics in my life but obviously not enough, because I had NO idea gum contains plastic. YUK.

 

almostallthetruth
almostallthetruth

I go back and forth because I love gum, but I hate the ingredients and packaging. I hope someone finds a simple way to either do what Peppersmith does here or brings it here.

Maria
Maria

Great info. I am a chronic gum-chewer, so finding products such as this may just save my teeth ;)

emmageisler
emmageisler

I love chewing gum this wold be great for me!

 

CyndiNorwitz
CyndiNorwitz

I've been searching for natural gum.  My daughter loves to chew it.  She likes Glee and Xylichew but I would rather avoid the plastics.  I've already spoken to the Peppersmith people.  They are so nice.  But yeah not in the US...yet!  Though what my daughter really wants is stick gum.  Why oh why is stick gum so bleeping toxic?  They usually have 2 or 3 artificial sweeteners along with preservatives and other horrid stuff.  I don't get it.  Why is stick gum harder to make natural than pellet gum?  What am I missing here?  I can't find stick gum even with borderline ingredients and rotten packaging.  It's all just awful beyond words.  If you have an extra sample, I'd love for my daughter to try it.  Just one or two pellets is fine, I don't need a whole package.  If she really likes it, I'll find a way to get it.  Thanks!

pika
pika

I'd love to try it if you have a sample left to send! I live in Colorado and if you email me at pap ri ka 5 7 9 at g mail (without the spaces) I can give you my mailing address! ^_^

 

Sarah
Sarah

Nooooo, gum tease!  Haha, I got so excited as I gave up chewing gum because of the plastic/waste, but sometimes you really just need a piece.  They should definitely share the love with the U.S.!

Melissa Brown
Melissa Brown

@Suzanne: check out snopes. The canola myth has been busted. Or, check out crunchybetty.com - she recently did a blog post on it (which you may trust as it is a greener site). This rapeseed is gmo free which I think is the big concern.

Melissa Brown
Melissa Brown

@Suzanne: check snopes regarding the safety of canola/rapeseed etc. or, crunchybetty.com wrote a post about canola. Either way I would find a source that is neutral. Like, not the canola site and not a natural site. Perhaps a scientific site. Also, keep in mind that rape has been consumed for centuries in Europe. Btw, Rapunzle got her name because her mother craved rape plants when she was pregnant :)

My Plastic-free Life
My Plastic-free Life

Suzanne, this is rapeseed lecithin. I don't really know how lecithin is different from the pure oil and whether it makes a difference. Here is the definition of lecithin, but I don't have time right now to try to research it. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Lecithin

lorialper
lorialper

Thank you so much for sharing this info Beth. I've been looking for gum without plastic and without titanium dioxide. Finally, a brand that get's it.

Suzanne Meyer
Suzanne Meyer

Beth - I have been looking into canola oil/benefits- "non benefits" from the comment of Barbara Torrey Centofante - do you have any advice on wether canola is harmful or not, I have found some websites/blogs saying stay away from it, it is really not good for one to eat, there is one website that claims it was banned by the FDA for human consumption and then the Canadian Gov paid 50 million to have it approved w/o going through the regular channels of approval - sorry can't find the link for that info

Carly
Carly

Sounds like a great product, and vegan too! I'd love to try a pack!

Kristy
Kristy

Gorgeous packaging, too! Alas, I'm allergic to peppermint. Guess I'll just keep chewing on my fingernails. ;)

FroWillis
FroWillis

I got so excited till I read it's only available in the UK. Dangnabit, UK has everything aweome. 

Char Grainger
Char Grainger

I'll have to order some for my friend in the UK, and she can bring it back to Australia with her at xmas.

Tara
Tara

My daughter and I are both avid gum chewers and would love to try this gum. Right now, we usually chew Xylicious gum.

Anna
Anna

I go through so much gum, I didn't know until I came across your blog last week that most gum has plastic IN it! Eek! I'd love to give this a try!!

Lizva
Lizva

A friend of mine with multiple allergies has been searching for this gum in the US -- now I know why she hasn't been able to find it!  I had checked with a local British food importer, as well as at 2 health food stores....I hope your post will encourage US retailers to carry this product!

Barbara Torrey Centofante
Barbara Torrey Centofante

Not so excited about the rapeseed which is also called canola oil... even if it is GMO free. Maybe they could make it from coconut oil ! Then I would buy it in a nanosecond !!!

adl1946
adl1946

I would love a pack of the gum!

 

AliceDilts
AliceDilts

If you still have a pack I would love to have my husband try one!

jessicanne
jessicanne

LOVE Peppersmith! Their lemon mints are the best; just bought a box today :)Everyone should follow them on Facebook, as they often post cute and quirky updates.

EcoCatLady
EcoCatLady

I used to be a big gum chewer, but gave it up a few years back because I was trying to cut out artificial sweeteners. These days I can't imagine how I ever stomached the stuff... it sort of tastes like toxic soup to me now.

 

BUT... the real reason for my comment is a public service announcement for any dog lovers out there. Xylitol, which is an ingredient in virtually all sugar free gums (and many other sugar free products) is EXTREMELY toxic to dogs.Their bodies can't metabolize it correctly and it causes them to dump insulin, triggering the equivalent of diabetic shock. So if your dog likes to get into things, please be careful and don't leave a package of gum around where the dog could eat it.

 

Here's more info: http://vetmedicine.about.com/od/toxicology/qt/xylitol_tox.htm

jeramigarcia
jeramigarcia

Very interesting. I stopped chewing gum when I read a previous post about it containing plastic, but I do miss it...for some reason, chewing gum helped me stay focused (aka awake) during class. Haha. I would love to try some. 

Jessica
Jessica

I've been looking for something like this! I'd love some! Wish they would have it here in the U.S.

Holly
Holly

I always choose old-school Trident because it has the least plastic packaging but it would be great to get the best of both worlds, no plastic on the outside and no plastic on the inside.

Crystyle
Crystyle

I'm not personally a big gum chewer, but my son uses chewing gum to help with his oral sensory issues.  I would love to try a plastic free gum with him.  Thank you for finding one!

jep38295
jep38295

Hey, This post is great... I have been looking for a natural gum and right now am settling for spry or glee... would love to see this in the US... would love to try some.. Jamie

 

Catherine
Catherine

my email address is Catherine@LNWCoaching.com

BethTerry
BethTerry moderator

@Kristy are you allergic to spearmint?  There is also a spearmint version without peppermint.

BethTerry
BethTerry moderator

 @SherryMarkwart Hi.  From the website, it looks like Eco-Dent Between comes in a plastic blister pack inside the cardboard box.  I just emailed the company to find out what the gum base is made from.

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