Nestle expands plant-based products with new vegan KitKat bar

Nestle, the company you love to hate, is expanding its plant-based food products with a new variety of a classic candy bar: Vegan KitKat. The company says it has seen many requests for a vegan KitKat option, prompting the launch of this new treat — which Nestle says is officially called 'KitKat V.'

Nestle plans to launch the KitKat V product in multiple unspecified countries later this year, promising the same wafer-and-chocolate you get with the regular version, but minus the use of animal-based products. The launch will be limited in the sense that you'll only be able to get the vegan KitKat bar from 'selected retailers' and the KitKat Chocolatory.

The limited availability will, the company says, serve as a test to determine whether a wider product rollout will take place. The company claims that it is using 100-percent sustainable cocoa, adding KitKat V to the growing number of plant-based foods the company has introduced.

Many companies have gotten on the plant-based bandwagon as consumers cite increased interest in adopting healthier, more sustainable lifestyles. Nestle owns a large number of brands through which it offers plant-based products like dairy-free ice cream, drinks made with oat and rice milk rather than dairy, a vegan alternative to condensed milk, and more.

Nestle has been in the news quite a bit recently, including a recent class-action lawsuit against it and a number of other companies over alleged forced child labor practices involved in cocoa production and harvesting.

The lawsuit alleges that Nestle and other named companies have 'knowingly profited from the forced labor of children performing hazardous work harvesting Defendants' cocoa all of this time and, rather than at least make progress, the abuse of child workers has increased.'