‘Babe’ Star and PETA Pal Pipes Up for Pigs Killed for Peeps

After Production Suspension, James Cromwell Urges Candy Company to Nix Gelatin From Marshmallow Treats

For Immediate Release:
September 17, 2020

Contact:
Moira Colley 202-483-7382

Bethlehem, Pa. – Following reports that a pandemic-related interruption in Peeps production means that there will be no Halloween, Christmas, or Valentine’s Day Peeps this year, James Cromwell sent a letter this morning encouraging the company to seize this opportunity to remove gelatin—which is made from the connective tissue of pigs and other animals—from its iconic treats.

“I had the privilege and pleasure of learning a lot about pigs when I starred in the movie Babe,” writes Cromwell. “They possess a remarkable capacity for love, joy, and sorrow. … Replacing gelatin from pigs with vegan gelatin would allow the company to honor its past while moving forward into the future.”

PETA—whose motto reads, in part, that “animals are not ours to eat”—opposes speciesism, a human-supremacist worldview. For more information, please visit PETA.org.

Cromwell’s letter to David L. Yale, president and COO of Just Born Quality Confections, follows.

September 17, 2020

David L. Yale

President and Chief Operating Officer

Just Born Quality Confections

Dear Mr. Yale,

The world is in turmoil, and we’re facing many pressing concerns, but we can’t allow our small pleasures to disappear. People around the world enjoy Peeps, so I hope that production of this iconic treat will continue—with one important caveat: that it be made without gelatin.

Demand for vegan food is at an all-time high, and it would be easy to replace gelatin in Peeps with a vegan ingredient such as Geltor’s vegan gelatin when full production resumes. Making this switch would broaden your product’s appeal, opening up a whole new market while losing none of its taste.

The gelatin used in Peeps comes from pig body parts. I had the privilege and pleasure of learning a lot about pigs when I starred in the movie Babe. The intelligence and inquisitive personality of these highly social animals were a constant delight. They possess a remarkable capacity for love, joy, and sorrow. In contrast to the whimsy of Peeps, gelatin—made from the skin, bones, and connective tissues of pigs and other animals—represents a lifetime of pain and suffering. The tails of pigs are cut off and their teeth are clipped at a young age without any pain relief, and as soon as they’ve been fattened enough, they endure a terrifying trek to the slaughterhouse, where they’re strung up and bled out.

Replacing gelatin from pigs with vegan gelatin would allow the company to honor its past while moving forward into the future. It would also mean that Just Born would no longer use a dreadful ingredient or support its production and would appeal to customers who don’t want to support cruelty to animals.

May I hear that you’ll give my suggestion serious consideration? My friends at PETA and I look forward to hearing from you.

Yours truly,

James Cromwell

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“Almost all of us grew up eating meat, wearing leather, and going to circuses and zoos. We never considered the impact of these actions on the animals involved. For whatever reason, you are now asking the question: Why should animals have rights?” READ MORE

— Ingrid E. Newkirk, PETA President and co-author of Animalkind