Vegan bakery caught reselling Dunkin' donuts

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Dunkin’ Donuts baked goods to resell at a profit.

Are Dunkin’ Donuts affordable over in the US; here, Brexitlandia, they cost a pretty penny. I can’t this scam working over here.

Plus, endangering the health and morals of your customers seems like a loose-loose proposition.


It’s not that Dunkin’ Donuts aren’t expensive so much as niche products like vegan and gluten-free donuts are even more expensive.


A dozen donuts costs $12.99 from the Dunkin near me. I’m in the Northeast, though, and Dunkin is about as ubiquitous here as Starbucks is in other places. They might be more expensive in other parts of the country, I don’t know.


Maybe I am just old. :smile: Old Man shouts at Inflation.


This works because nowadays, most people who insist on gluten-free food do not actually suffer from coeliac disease or a wheat allergy – for them it is mainly a lifestyle choice, so donuts which do contain gluten are unlikely to actually cause them problems (other than those inherent in eating any sort of junk food).

Of course, if actual coeliac-disease patients were to eat these sham-gluten-“free” donuts, that would not be great for them; coeliac disease is not like an allergy where you can go into anaphylactic shock and die, but it has various annoying, uncomfortable and long-term detrimental symptoms that can only be mitigated by, as far as possible, not eating gluten-containing food in the first place, so boo on these fake-gluten-free donut sellers; let the law come down on them with its full force.

Coeliac disease is not very common (between 1 in 100 and 1 in 170 people, depending on where you are in the world). Actual wheat allergies are even rarer. Effectively, the current craze for gluten-free food on the part of many basically healthy people is great news for sufferers from this debilitating ailment, as it has led to much wider selections of gluten-free food being available even in mainstream supermarkets, where previously gluten-free options were hard to come by and expensive.


As a comparison, a dozen donuts from the nearest Krispy Kreme to me (which is about an hour away) is $15.19. Local donut shops will probably vary from something a little cheaper than Dunkin to more expensive than Krispy Kreme. A dozen donuts from the bakery at my local grocery store is about the same price as Dunkin.


… but I would imagine is significantly more common among the subset of people who are ordering gluten-free donuts, regardless of whether that number is 100% or not.


I used to know someone with actual celiac disease. If they accidentally ate something with gluten in it (which most often happened when a restaurant lied about their ingredients…something far too common), they would have some pretty serious gastric distress for a few days, but it wasn’t anything that could cause a fatality. But gluten interferes with the ability to absorb nutrients from food, for someone with celiac, so frequent consumption of gluten could lead to an early death. It’s pretty rare, though.


“For people with coeliac disease, even small amounts of gluten can damage the lining of the small intestine (bowel), which prevents the proper absorption of food nutrients. Inflammation also occurs elsewhere in the body.”

My brother-in-law has celiac disease. Even the slightest trace of gluten will cause him severe distress. Not to be taken lightly.


Absolutely. One wonders how someone could get away with this scam for any length of time – possibly any coeliac-disease sufferers who had a donut from that place put their intestinal distress down to some other reason because the donuts were purportedly OK.

I don’t know whether food from vegan or gluten-free outlets is actually inspected by the authority in charge, or whether this is taken on faith. OTOH, if there are in fact inspections, and if the food inspection service in the US is anything like its equivalent over here, they’re so overworked that you could probably sell sham gluten-free donuts for quite some time before coming up on the regular inspection schedule.


It cuts both ways: ‘gluten-free’ is way more common; but because the clientele is largely interested in it by choice it’s pretty common for it to be “recipe not based on wheat flour; just like William Davis said you’d want” rather than “suitable for someone whose immune system is actually checking; no cross-contamination”.


Yep. I was trying to point out the difference to, say, people with peanut allergies where basically getting too close to a peanut could kill them. Coeliac disease is bad and it completely sucks to be suffering from it, and if it is bad enough (not all coeliac-disease sufferers actually exhibit symptoms) and not managed it can indeed do you in before your time, but it’s not a “one bite of the wrong donut and it’s curtains for you” situation.

Way back I used to know someone who had coeliac disease and for him it meant that if he went away over the weekend he would, e.g., bring his own bread (made from rice, IIRC). Nowadays it’s usually OK for most people in this situation to tell the venue where they’re going that they need gluten-free food, but back then, very few folks in the hospitality industry would know how to deal with this.


Yeah, something as simple as not properly washing a mixing bowl that previously had flour in it could cause someone with celiac’s a serious problem. And then you have restaurants that don’t really understand and may claim something doesn’t have gluten, but they didn’t take into account that they used wheat flour to thicken a sauce. Or…maybe the sauce isn’t supposed to use wheat flour to thicken it, but on one particular day, they’re out of cornstarch and a cook uses flour, because hey, what’s the difference?


Did this really happen? One picture of a doughnut without any pics of the box or context. Could be just be furthering a grudge here. If someone was trying to pass Dunkin off as vegan, why use the most obvious (and Instagram friendly) choice of one sprinkled with Dunkin logos? There are certainly more steath options for vegan donut fraud.

Also what counts as “gluten-free” can vary according to food-labelling laws. “Gluten-free” does not mean “not even one single molecule of gluten in this”, which would be impossible to achieve in practice. It just means that the amount of gluten in the food item is below some limit that has been set by official regulation, based on what seems to be appropriate for most affected people. Where that limit is exactly, can vary, as can the sensitivity of people to the actual amount of gluten left in the food.

It’s presumably possible for someone to have coeliac disease to a point where even some of the choices from the “gluten-free” shelf in the supermarket can make them sick, even if the vast majority of sufferers are fine with them.

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I was wondering about that, too. Surely if one was to make an (illicit) business out of selling Dunkin’ donuts as fake-vegan-and-gluten-free, one would make sure to get large quantities of specific donut flavours rather than boxes of a dozen randomly mixed ones that might have the Dunkin’ signature donuts in them. But then again, as they say “intelligence has its limits but stupidity is not thus handicapped”. Perhaps they were trying to fly under the radar at the Dunkin’ end and didn’t pay enough attention when repacking the good stuff.

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Desperation makes people do stupid things that seem nonsensical to the rest of us. The food business is tough. Specialty food businesses like gluten-free, vegan, organic, etc. are even tougher because those foods are more expensive to produce. And while people expect to pay more, and will, it’s also a much smaller market. So if the donut shop was struggling to stay afloat financially, I could see them doing something like this, and it probably wasn’t the first time. Or the second. And people who are getting away with shady practices tend to get complacent and careless. That’s my guess. Also, if this is ‘fake’, the actions of the vegan, gluten-free store than bought these are just as nonsensical. So what makes that the more likely explanation to you than the donut shop reselling Dunkin’ donuts?


It’s 10 pictures, a gluten test kit that showed the donut was filled with gluten, a text exchange with the seller of the donuts where the seller sent a photo of a completely different looking pack of sprinkles and said those were the ones on the donut.

Go look through the instagram post. The evidence presented is pretty damning.

So yes, this really happened.


“Jerry I’m telling you, it’s fat free yogurt!”