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Vegetarian and Vegan Softgels Manufacturing

Vegan Omega 3 Supplement & Manufacturing

Vegetarian and Vegan Substitutes for Gelatin

Certain nutrients, like omega-3 fatty acids, do require more attention while eating a vegetarian or vegan plant-based diet. There is naturally occurring omega-3s in some foods, but many are derived from animals or not converted well by the body. With this in mind, a premium, plant-based omega-3 supplement may be your best option.

The steady rise of vegetarian and vegan softgel manufacturers in the USA has been in response to changing consumer trends in the market. With more health awareness and environmental concerns emerging throughout the past decade, people around the world are searching for healthier options to accommodate their lifestyle, spending power, and nutrition. 


Vegetarian omega-3 supplements meet this demand through advanced, stable manufacturing and ingredients that avoid the animal by-products of traditional softgels. With the right marketing and a key understanding of what vegetarian supplements can offer, distributors can take advantage of this growing market for consumers actively looking for alternative options.


The traditional process for producing gelatin involves boiling animal tissues and bones until they congeal into a gel-like substance. As such, many seemingly vegetarian items are rendered non-vegetarian by the inclusion of gelatin in their ingredients. Common examples include marshmallows, yogurt, candies, desserts, and gel-capsules.


Although vegetarian replacements cannot perfectly replicate the thickening and gelling properties of gelatin, products such as agar agar, red seaweed, and vegetable gums provide you with a variety of close alternatives.

How to Choose a Vegetarian or Vegan Omega-3 Supplement

There are a few items to consider when choosing a plant-based omega-3 supplement.
The first, and most important, is the source. Most omega-3 supplements are produced from fish or krill oil.

Now there are numerous “fish oil free” omega-3 alternative that are vegetarian and even vegan with most being made from algae or yeast.

Many people are not aware, but algae is the original source of omega-3 fatty acids. Fish eat the algae and plankton, which are very high in omega-3 and other nutrients. This allows fish to store and accumulate omega-3 fatty acids.

Vegetarian & Vegan Omega-3 Softgel Capsules

After you have found the right plant-based omega-3 supplement, next you need to consider the dosage. Any supplement you purchase should provide at least 250mg of DHA and DPA per does. This is on the low end as in some cases, people take 2 to 3 grams per day. Be sure to look as the supplement facts panel to see the total amount of omega-3s, EPA, and DHA per serving.

Finally, look for supplements that originate from clean sources such as Iceland or other pristine locations. Water quality and conditions matter so make sure you choose wisely

Selling Points for Vegetarian and Vegan Softgels

According to a recent study, 2.2% of the total vegetarian population of the U.S. identifies. Using plant-based technology, vegetarian softgels present a highly viable option for your brand and your market’s needs in different sizes and color options. 


Premium vegetarian omega-3 supplements demonstrate significant advantages over other nutritional supplement delivery forms including:

  • Vegetarian/Vegan
  • Non-GMO
  • Halal
  • Kosher
  • No risk of animal-transmitted diseases
  • Poligeenan Free
  • Better thermal stability properties
  • Less clumping
  • Minimal deformation
  • High bioavailability and absorption
  • Meets international animal-free standards
  • Suitable for shipment to 4 zone heat countries
  • Easy export registration

A Variety of Vegetarian and Vegan Alternatives

Red Seaweed

The common vegetarian alternative to gelatin is red seaweed. Commercial preparations of this gelling agent involve washing, boiling, and filtering out the solid components of Irish moss seaweed. Red seaweed is obtained either dehydrating the remaining liquid with alcohol or boiling until a gel is produced, pressing and drying the gel to create red seaweed powder. 


Although you can use 1 ounce of red seaweed to gel 1 cup of a liquid, the thickness of a gel depends on the variety. Iota red seaweed is more suitable for softgels and puddings, while kappa red seaweed is a good replacement for gelatin in harder gel products.


Tapioca Seeds

Tapioca soft-gels offer the best specialized soft-gel technologies and solutions for real human health due to the 100% vegetarian and non-animal sources. The appeal and potential for vegetarian products are rapidly expanding beyond the group of people. People avoid animal products for ethical/personal reasons. This includes the much larger base of consumers seeking healthier, cleaner supplement labels. 


Tapioca vegetable soft-gels can replace gelatin in supplements, offering patented, 100% vegetarian, non-GMO Project Verified, non-animal materials.

Agar Agar

Icelandirect Agar Agar

One of the most common vegetarian alternatives to gelatin is agar agar. Production of this flavorless thickening agent involves cooking and pressing seaweed, typically until it reaches a powdered or flaked form. Although you can use either of these forms in place of gelatin, you should opt for powdered agar agar for the best results. This is because powdered agar agar is a 1-to-1 replacement for gelatin. 


When using flaked agar agar, you should either grind it before cooking or use approximately three servings of flaked agar agar for every one serving of gelatin.

Vegetable Gums

Vegetable Gums

Vegetable gums are common ingredients in ice cream, chewing gum, and gluten-free baked goods. Common examples include guar gum and xantham gum. Guar gum is commonly ground or flaked, dissolves in liquids easily and is a very effective thickening agent. However, its gelatin-like properties vary with its quality, temperature, and pH. 


Xantham gum is more effective at increasing a liquid’s viscosity and retains this property at a broader temperature and pH range. Despite xantham’s higher stability, vegetable gums do not retain their gelling and thickening properties as well as gelatin and seaweed-derived alternatives.

Other Alternatives

Other vegetarian gelatin alternatives are neither as common nor as flexible as agar agar, red seaweed, and vegetable gums. Pectin is produced by boiling, filtering, dehydrating fruits and fruit peels. Typically made with citrus fruit peels, pectin produces a soft gel and is a common ingredient in jellies, jams, and marmalades. 


Another gelatin alternative commonly present in jellies is konjac. This yam-like plant is a central component of jelly candies and can be dried and pressed to produce a powder, known as konjac flour.

Icelandirect: The Leading Ingredient Source and Private Label Manufacturer

We source our ingredients around the world emphasizing high product quality and consistency. Our softgels is produced by HACCP, GMP, and ISO 9001 certifications. We even manufacture vegan private-label supplements for our potential vegan consumers.

Combined with a wide variety of soft-gel models to meet your specific size requirements including custom shapes and sizes, we can produce a softgel unique to your product and tailored to your market. We use state-of-the-art facilities to monitor and analyze our raw materials. This ensures that our softgels exceeds international pharmaceutical standards. 


We offer products that are developed, produced, and documented based on FDA-approved quality processes and standards. You can confidently trust us for the quality parameters of the original ingredients that are maintained in your finished soft gel product.

Icelandirect provides a high level of customer care and extremely competitive pricing for private label retailers and contracts for vegan supplement manufacturers all over the United States. We provide quality private-label packaging for softgels in plastic bottles, blister packs, or pouches.

The vegan supplement manufacturers don’t prove ideal by merely producing vegan supplements. The purpose is to manufacture without the cost of nature. We’re strongly committed to providing customers with green, eco-friendly, sustainable packaging. Our fully-green option gives clients a strong marketing advantage with environmentally-conscious consumers.

We have exemplified unparalleled excellence within the world of contract packaging. In our facilities, located in Clifton and East Rutherford, New Jersey, we provide a wide array of manufacturing services designed to fit the diverse needs of multi-sized corporations nationwide. 


Without considering the nature and extent of the project, we provide real solutions to manufacturing problems. Our experience and expertise run deep. Our commitment to quality, integrity, and our clients’ success is stronger than ever.

Our fundamental mission is to furnish our clients with an end-product of unparalleled quality and excellence with the added promise that “no job is ever too big or small.” Whether your company is well established and recognized or in its start-up phase, Icelandirect welcomes the challenge to step up to the plate and dedicate its state-of-the-art manufacturing and production resources to fulfill the packaging needs of your company and its contract packaging projects.
As a valued strategic partner, we offer a comprehensive program of services, turnkey solutions, and client support that is unmatched in the industry. Our product development team can provide customized and proprietary formulations. They are designed specifically to meet the needs of our customers and their method of distribution. Our vertically integrated manufacturing and packaging process allow us to schedule flexible production runs to respond quickly to shifting market demands. Every step of the way, we are committed to your growth and success!
Contact us today to develop a superior product and get it to market quickly, efficiently, and at the best possible cost.
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